No true high-fantasy world can do without elves, dwarves, gnomes, and other nonhuman races. It's the defining element of the genre. It would seem that it's difficult to escape the often hackneyed stereotypes of the noble elves, the uncomplicated dwarves, and the ordinary human. Despite this, though, Andrzej Sapkowski shows that it is possible. By creating his version of this fantasy world, he brings with his imagination a huge dose of originality to the ossified genre.