Originally Posted by Prime Junta
Yeah, Fritz Leiber rules. Lankhmar was a huge influence on first-edition AD&D; the Legends & Lore book even had a section devoted to Nehwon. In fact, I discovered Leiber through AD&D. It's a brilliant mix of light-hearted fantasy with dirt and grit and moral ambiguity, sort of the best parts of both low and high fantasy all rolled into one. Conan without the bombast, Lord of the Rings without the wordiness, Discworld without the too-clever-for-its-own-good satire, and all beautifully written. Quarmall has got to be one of the most wonderfully imagined fantasy environments in any book.
(Okay, so it's also a bit uneven -- The Bleak Shore for example read more like a bad acid trip than anything else.)