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The Fellowship of the Talisman

Clifford D. Simak

In an alternate world where the Dark Ages never ended, "the Evil" that arises every five hundred years has prevented all manner of technological advancement, even well into the twentieth century. The son of a powerful English noble, young Duncan Standish has always longed to be a soldier of the Lord, and now he's been offered a rare opportunity to fulfill his dream. Entrusted with the delivery of an ancient manuscript--purported to be irrefutable evidence of the existence of Jesus Christ--to a noted Oxenford scholar, Duncan must journey many perilous miles in the company of a motley group of fellow travelers, including a goblin, a ghost, and other magical and non-magical companions. But the road they traverse together is fraught with terrible trials that would test even the most devout, for the Evil is strong in this place of dark wonders.

Multiple Hugo, Nebula, and Locus Award-winner and SFWA Grand Master Clifford D. Simak moves easily from science fiction to quest fantasy in this enthralling tale of magic, peril, and discovery on an Earth that never was. Rich in color, thrills, and wild invention, and populated by a highly original and unforgettable cast of characters, Fellowship of the Talisman showcases the author's peerless storytelling skills, demonstrating once again that the great Simak had few equals in the realm of twentieth-century speculative fiction.

People of the Talisman / The Secret of Sinharat

Leigh Brackett

The Secret of Sinharat

Eric John Stark was a hunted outlaw, a hard, merciless renegade with a twenty-year Moonprison sentence hanging over him. Men called him barbarian, wild man. Women called him beast.

But the Earth Police Control had a use for him, for they knew why he was on Mars. The Martian desert-tribesmen of Kesh and Shun had made alliance with the men of the Low Canals, and following the banner of the enigmatic chieftain Kynon, who promised them eternal life, they would sweep out of the deserts and cast a storm of blood across the planet. Stark was one of the outlaw mercenaries who'd been asked to help lead them.

But if he could lead those men, perhaps he could also stop them. And if the rumors which filtered into Mars' civilized border towns had truth, this uprising had to be stopped - for those behind it were more powerful, and infinitely older, than the barbarian armies they would unleash.

People of the Talisman

When Eric John Stark escaped from the camp of the Lord Ciaran of Mekh, he was nearly dead. His mouth, crazed with fear of the bloody thing that clung to its back, laid its belly to the ground and ran wildly through the bitter wind and snow of the Martian Norlands, and Stark held his seat by a concentration that went beyond the urge to live.

He had a purpose now - to find the city of Kushat, which guarded the mysterious Gates of Death and was in turn protected by the Talisman of Ban Cruach. But the Talisman had been secretly stolen years before, and Kushat now lay helpless before the planned attack of Ciaran's mountain hordes.

What Ciaran didn't know was that Stark himself had the Talisman, and he was grimly determined to use it to exact a savage revenge on the Lord of Mekh.

The Talisman's Trinket

Chronicles of the Kencyrath

P. C. Hodgell

This short story in Hodgell's Kencyrath-setting originally appeared on the Baen website. No other known publications are available at this time.

Read the full story for free at Baen.


Earthdawn: Book 5

Sam Lewis

The stories of the people living in the Age of Earthdawn reflect their experiences at the mercy of the evil Horrors, a terrifying force that threatens their minds, lives, and souls, causing them to seal themselves underground. 


  • 9 - Prison of Stone - [Earthdawn] - (1994) - novelette by Louis J. Prosperi
  • 53 - Nothing Without Price - [Earthdawn] - (1994) - novelette by Tom Dowd
  • 89 - Before Life Ends - [Earthdawn] - (1994) - novelette by Christopher Kubasik
  • 122 - Nowhere to Run - [Earthdawn] - (1994) - novelette by Scott Jenkins
  • 172 - Coiled in Dark Amber - [Earthdawn] - (1994) - novella by Jak Koke
  • 228 - Of Blood and Time - [Earthdawn] - (1994) - novella by Greg Gorden

Harry and Marlowe and the Talisman of the Cult of Egil

Harry and Marlowe: Book 1

Carrie Vaughn

This short story originally appeared in Lightspeed, February 2012. It can also be found in the anthologies Steampunk III: Steampunk Revolution (2012), edited by Ann VanderMeer and The Mammoth Book of Steampunk Adventures (2014), edited by Sean Wallace.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

The Talismans of Shannara

Heritage of Shannara: Book 4

Terry Brooks

Although some of the goals to keep Shannara safe had been met, the work of Walker Boh, Wren, and Par was not yet done. For The Shadowmen still swarmed over the Four Lands, poisoning all with their dark magic. Each Shannaran had a special death waiting for him- at the hands of The Shadowmen-unless Par could find a way to free them all with the Sword of Shannara.

The Divine Talisman

Legend of Asahiel: Book 3

Eldon Thompson

To protect his people from the demonic Illysp, Torin, king of Alson, made the ultimate sacrifice. Now his best friend and his former love seek to salvage the shattered lands beyond their borders.

But a treacherous assault costs them their most powerful weapon--the fabled Crimson Sword.

Hopelessly outmatched, Pentania's citizens must flee their conquered homeland or else perish. And now the Leviathan has been awakened--an unfathomable creature whose wrath could single-handedly destroy the entire world. Scant hope remains--save for the possibly futile efforts of a lone elf, a mad witch, and a fallen hero charged with unraveling a series of divine riddles. But doom is inevitable, unless they can somehow break the powerful bonds of a fiendish, insidious possession.

The Talisman

Night Hunter: Book 2

Robert Faulcon

The vile, demonic forces of evil have awakened and gathered on a cold, windswept coastline.

They seek a talisman of ancient power to unleash their dark reign upon the world, But not if Dan Brady can stop them.

The lives of his family are at stake. A whole community is seized by a ravaging terror. And Dan Brasy is ready for action. He is...


Determined and remorseless. A savage avenger of evil. He is sworn to destroy the monstrous forces that brutalized and abducted his wife, his son, his daughter. And nothing can stop him. Not even the darkest legions of Hell itself...

The Talisman

Talisman: Book 1

Stephen King
Peter Straub

On a brisk autumn day, a thirteen-year-old boy stands on the shores of the gray Atlantic, near a silent amusement park and a fading ocean resort called the Alhambra. The past has driven Jack Sawyer here: his father is gone, his mother is dying, and the world no longer makes sense. But for Jack everything is about to change. For he has been chosen to make a journey back across America - and into another realm.

One of the most influential and heralded works of fantasy ever written, The Talisman is an extraordinary novel of loyalty, awakening, terror, and mystery. Jack Sawyer, on a desperate quest to save his mother's life, must search for a prize across an epic landscape of innocents and monsters, of incredible dangers and even more incredible truths. The prize is essential, but the journey means even more. Let the quest begin...

Black House

Talisman: Book 2

Stephen King
Peter Straub

Two of the greatest storytellers of our time join forces to create an epic thriller of unsurpassed power; a twisting, compelling story of a small American town held in the grip of evil beyond all reason.

French Landing, Wisconsin. A comfortable, solid middle-American town inhabited by comfortable, solid middle-Americans! and a serial killer. Three children have been lost -- taken by a monster with a taste for child's flesh nicknamed 'The Fisherman' after a legendary murderer. It's all way beyond the experience of the local police, whose only hope lies with ex-detective Jack Sawyer, the man who cracked their last case for them.

But, plagued by visions of another world, Jack has retired to this rural retreat precisely to avoid such horrors -- and, having recognized the touch of madness on this case, he's keeping well away. Soon, he'll have no choice. Young Tyler Marshall, left behind one afternoon by his bullying friends, pedals past the local old folks' home and is accosted by a crow. 'Gorg,' it caws, and 'Ty.' What ten-year-old could resist a bird that speaks his name? Not Ty, that's for sure. And as he follows the mysterious crow, he's grabbed by the neck and dragged into a hedge. The Fisherman has made another catch!

The Ninth Talisman

The Annals of the Chosen: Book 2

Lawrence Watt-Evans

All of the world is kept in a delicate balance under the supervision of the Wizard Lord. It is his duty to govern lightly and protect his domain...but if he should stray from the way of the just, then it is up to the Chosen to intercede.

The Chosen are the Leader, the Seer, the Swordsman, the Beauty, the Thief, the Scholar, the Archer, and the Speaker. These are magically infused mortal individuals who for the term of their service have only one function--to remove an errant Wizard Lord.

The Chosen fulfilled this role when they removed the previous Wizard Lord and exposed treachery from within their own ranks.

Since their last adventure, the world has returned to apparent peace and prosperity. The new Wizard Lord rules benevolently... but with an eye towards modernization through technology, instead of magic.

Do such plans jeopardize the delicate balance of power?

Is a Wizard Lord who is able to rule without magic a threat to the Chosen?