Michael Moorcock

The Stealer of Souls

The Stealer of Souls takes five short stories based on the Albino Sorceror Elric and his chaotic living blade Stormbringer and combines them into an ongoing narrative. The Dreaming City introduces the tragic character for the first time, sending the disposed Melnibonian king him on a raid against the island capital city of his own people, Imryyr; it is a ravishing with a tragic conclusion, and the tale itself acts as a perfect introduction to the character.

While the Gods Laugh sees Elric questing for the Dead God's Book, a tome which contains the answers which offer Elric freedom from his pain, though as it turns out, the aquisition of the book is merely the first problem. As which many Elric tales the story rests on a concluding irony, though this one is a little less satisfying and suprising than most.

In The Stealer of Souls Elric is a hired mercenary, employed by a group of greedy merchants agrieved of a rivals success. Though it turns out Elric has his own personal reasons for accepting the quest, finding some kind of reconciliation with the remnants of his broken race along the way. A brilliant piece of Sword and Sorcery, filled with action and a plot which twists and turns all the way to its conclusion.

Kings in Darkness finds Elric facing a strange decadent race who reside in the centre of a forest, where he meets his future wife Zarozinia for the first time. A quest story with a difference this shows Elric attempting a grand deception which fails dismally, and leads them into bringing a prophecy to life.

The final tale is the excellent Flamebringers, which pits Elric and his friends against a travelling army of beggars who bring death wherever they go due to a sorceror they hold in thrall. An exciting, well plotted tale which brings to book to a satisfying conclusion.

Bibliographic Information

Omnibus Editions

Elric of Melnibone

Includes: Elric of Melniboné, The Fortress of the Pearl, The Sailor on the Seas of Fate, The Dreaming City, While the Gods Laugh, The Singing Citadel.


Includes: The Sleeping Sorceress, The Revenge of the Rose, The Stealer of Souls, Kings in Darkness, The Caravan of Forgotten Dreams, Stormbringer


The Stealer of Souls collected several of Moorcock's Elric tales together, forming them into a narrative, the tales were: The Dreaming City, While the Gods Laugh, The Stealer of Souls, Kings in Darkness, The Flame Bringers.

The stories making up The Stealer of Souls were later split up and incorporated into The Weird of the White Wolf and The Bane of the Black Sword.


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