Back in the late 1970s Adrian Cole created a fantasy character every bit as enigmatic as Moorcock’s Elric: The Voidal. I haven’t read one of these stories in a long while, perhaps too long. So the recent publication of Cole’s The Long Reach of Night (volume 2) and The Sword of Shadows (volume 3) (both just published by Wildside Press – no prices on the cover but affordable via Amazon UK) offers such an opportunity. Volume 1 of the Voidal stories, Oblivion Hand was published quite a few years ago.
The Long reach of Night includes nine stories, two originally published in 1979 and 1980. The rest are available here for the first time although Cole says that most were placed with magazines that sadly folded before the stories saw print. The dedication in this book is to Mike Chinn, Sean Williams & Phil Harbottle, Darrell Schweitzer and someone called Peter Colebourne (as misspellings go, not too bad: just an extra E and an unnecessary U).
Volume 3, The Sword of Shadows, includes eight stories of which three were previously published in the small presses. In fact, “At the Council of Gossipers” first appeared in Dark Horizons in 1980, and “Dark Destroyer” was originally published in the Alchemy Press/Saladoth anthology Swords Against the Millennium in 2000.