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The Tough Guide To Fantasyland Paperback – 25 Apr 1996


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz; 1st Paperback Edition edition (25 April 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 057560106X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575601062
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 520,946 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Diana Wynne Jones is recognised internationally as a major writer of fantasy and in 2007 received a LIFE ACHIEVEMENT AWARD at the World Fantasy Convention. She has also won the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award (twice) and the Guardian Award for CHARMED LIFE. Her books have been translated into more than eighteen languages, and her novel HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE was made into an animated film by Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki. Diana lives in Bristol with her husband, a professor of Early English literature.

Product Description

Review

An A-Z of fantasy tropes, motifs and cliches. Blindingly funny. (Jon Courtenay Grimwood The Guardian) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The latest in the hugely successful Gollancz Parody series --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 16 Nov 2000
Format: Paperback
This book is laid out as an encyclopedia to help tourists in Fantasy Land. It lampoons classic stereotypes found in fantasy novels, including those written by Diana Wynne Jones.
A previous reviewer got the impression that the book is about fantasy role playing games, which is not the case. Certain entries refer to "pamphlets" which actually means "fantasy novels" as is obvious when reading the entries that imply that your tour will last through three pamphlets. The convention of writing in the second person and addressing the reader as a person who will actually, physically travel into fantasy land may have confused this reviewer.
In any case, I'm having great fun both reading the book and applying its categorizations to other fantasy books I'm reading and have read.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By L. Arrowsmith on 27 April 2005
Format: Hardcover
This book is great fun. Diana Wynne Jones gives a comprehensive run down on all the cliches of fantasy fiction, including musings on the unique properties of horses in Fantasyland, the origins of elves, and why fantasy characters don't wear socks.
It really is very, very funny, and it's also a good guide to what to avoid if you're thinking of writing your own fantasy epic.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 16 Mar 2001
Format: Paperback
This is a dictionary of everything you may find on your travels through fantasy novels. The entries on the different qualities of such items as swords, cups, jewels and other talismans was hilarious. buy this book if you love fantasy novels. Much as I love them, there are so many silly things in them, and Diana Wynne Jones sends them up beautifully. You can't get cross with her if she does ridicule something you have a sneaking love for, because she writes this kind of thing herself.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By dwein22 on 21 April 2005
Format: Hardcover
Absolutely a must read for those who like parodies, it's also a plus if you like fantasy novels as I found myself nodding along at some points.

It's set out alphabetically as things you're likely to encounter on your "tour" of fantasyland obviously based on "The Rough guide to..." series.

As the authour is a writer of fantasy fiction herself the book must be read as intended with tongue firmly in cheek.

If you like parodies and have read some fantasy stories you WILL like this book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 27 July 1999
Format: Paperback
This alphabetical guide to travelling in Fantasyland has everything you need - Official Management Terms (trademark); all the people you will ever meet; The Map; and the compulsory double-cross-reference. You will never read fantasy novels with a straight face again.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Anica on 12 Dec 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Add fun to your perusal of fantasy literature by acquiring and examining this essential guide! A wickedly funny look at cliches and conventions of fantasy writing, presented as a dictionary. Look up Food, of Horses, or Lost Heirs, and reread your well thumbed copy of The Belgariad, or Lord of the Rings, or indeed any fantasy, and see these books in a new, wry but affectionate light. Then read DWJ's Dark Lord of Derkholm, and Year of the Griffin; in these, she puts her observations into practice.
Recommended by Terry Pratchett himself (according to the cover)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gry Heidi Nordhagen on 18 April 2007
Format: Hardcover
Do you read Fantasy, and do you have a sense of humor? This is an _absolutely can't do without_ type of item in your luggage for your next foray into the realms of the Fantastic.

Or you can use it to savor earlier journeys into Fantasyland. All with tongue firmly planted in your cheek.

I just _love_ this book. It is not a book to be read through in one sitting. You will get an overdose of DWJ's humor that way - but if you read it slowly, in pieces, savoring each entry (and sometimes going back to read earlier entries) you will get the most out of this book . All the way from groans through giggles to outright belly laughs. And yes, if you do not already have it, I heartily recommend that you buy it. Soon.
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