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8 Reviews
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!
This is essentially a picture-book full of a fantastic array of fantastical things.Yes there is some written information,which is easy to read and superficially informative,but it's really all about the images,which are wonderfully varied and superbly reproduced.(See "The Book of Imaginary Beings" by the great Jorge Luis Borges if you want words rather than...
Published on 3 Feb 2011 by ash.differ

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good visual resource
I tend to agree with the previous reviewer, but I would be a little more generous. It's true that there is very little text here, and that which is given is quite light. However, the collection of images that are brought together here - all in very high Thames and Hudson quality - are all exceptional, and this is its strength. I would say that this makes the book a good...
Published on 24 Jan 2011 by JGC


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!, 3 Feb 2011
This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
This is essentially a picture-book full of a fantastic array of fantastical things.Yes there is some written information,which is easy to read and superficially informative,but it's really all about the images,which are wonderfully varied and superbly reproduced.(See "The Book of Imaginary Beings" by the great Jorge Luis Borges if you want words rather than pictures).There are images many will know from Bosch,Breugel,Fuseli,Goya,Hokusai and Kuniyoshi,but so many more that certainly I've never seen before.It must have taken a great deal of research to bring together such a marvellous array of extraordinary wonders from so many cultures,from all over the world and through the millennia.
My only critcism is that the captions are grouped together at the end of each chapter and it's a little annoying to have to flick back and forth through several pages to find out what you are looking at.But this is a minor quibble.Of course there are omissions,but perhaps we can look forward to "Monsters Part 2" sometime! Overall it's just a joy to peruse and delight in these scary,funny,bizarre,absurd and magnificent monsters.
A marvellous book,and excellent value for money.The Book Of Imaginary Beings (Vintage classics)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good visual resource, 24 Jan 2011
This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
I tend to agree with the previous reviewer, but I would be a little more generous. It's true that there is very little text here, and that which is given is quite light. However, the collection of images that are brought together here - all in very high Thames and Hudson quality - are all exceptional, and this is its strength. I would say that this makes the book a good companion piece to some of the better interpretative works on monsters that tend to come out on from scholarly publishers with who just can't afford to get lots of high quality reproductions of good artistic examples

I got this book as a resource for the class I teach on monsters and religion, so I could present students with a more focussed introduction to monsters in the visual in the arts than they would get by just putting the word into Google. So in some ways, Dell's book is a missed opportunity, but it is very attractive and quite useful in the absense of a more complete, lushly illustrated volume on monsters.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Images, Shame About the Text, 29 Dec 2011
By 
Mr. Jamie Panton (Wales, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
While this book contains a fantastic array of images from around the world and back and forth in time, juxtaposed in such a way it's a genuine delight to turn each page, a word of warning is in order: do not buy this book for the text. Many of the images presented in this book are filled with esoteric symbolism and secrets and so it is a shame that the author frequently writes such things as: 'In ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, monsters were a fact of life and we assume that people of those times believed implicitly in their physical reality.'

Really? Is this all the author has to say about a civilization that built the pyramids? This type of gross generalization is embarrassing at best, offensive at worse and lines the whole book. I would say it's only good for children, but feeding them such misinformation is probably a form of abuse. The images presented in this book are rich and beautiful, essays could be written on many, they are much more than the author would have you believe and, dare I say it, mediating on some could even help you on your path to a more enlightened state. So it's a shame this has seemingly gone completely over the authors head. As I said before, the only words to describe his writing is embarrassing and offensive to the ancient cultures as well as the reader's intelligence. Yes, some of these monsters may be have been believed real, but not in the flesh and blood materialistic way the author believes.

However, despite the text, the quality of the images still make the book worthy of a four star review. Enjoy them. Eat them up. Just ignore the text.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A colourful treat, 24 Mar 2011
By 
J. Cooper (Sheffield, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
If you are looking for an individual case by case study of monsters describing their complete history and characteristics, then you will be sorely disappointed with this book as it contains very little text. If on the other hand, you want a picture book which contains stunning representations of historical images and paintings, then you are in for a real visual treat.

The monsters are grouped together in several sections and contain the briefest of introductions to each category. What then follows is a selection of full and doubled paged images representing monsters from all over the world. The images and paintings are in colour, are very sharp and beautifully presented. At the end of each section there is a complete list of the sources used, so follow up reading is possible if desired.

This book is ideal for art and design students and is also recommended as a visual companion to those who enjoy studying folklore and legends.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Monsters, 25 Aug 2012
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This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
An excellent book. Well worth the money. Very little text but more than made up for by the good quality colour illustrations. Subsequently bought another copy for a friend.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bought for my daughter, 11 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
fast service and well packaged. Very good book and my daughter uses every day for her studies of art. Recommended
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6 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not what I thought it was.., 24 Jan 2011
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This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
I bought this book based on the preview, i.e. the first few pages.
This was not representative of the contents. Shortly after the introduction there is barely any text to complement the images- only brief intros for the entire chapter and source references.

The "author" of the book compiled pictures and photos from different sources to show various types of Monsters throughout the world. It's such a shame that that's ALL HE DID. You would think that one would actually bother to write at least ONE insightful paragraph to go with each image. But no - he'd rather leave it as a glorified picturebook and sell it as a "bestiary" instead. What a waste of an opportunity.

Fellow mythology enthusiasts and scholarly types needn't bother with this piece of tripe.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyed it., 26 Jan 2011
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This review is from: Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre (Hardcover)
I disagree with the other 'reviewers' who gave this 2 stars. The book is excellently produced. The illustrations are perfectly reproduced and the text is more than adequately informative. I enjoyed the author's style and handling of this very interesting subject.
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Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre
Monsters: A Bestiary of the Bizarre by Christopher Dell (Hardcover - 4 Oct 2010)
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