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The Book of Wonder

Lord Dunsany

Book Overview: 

Fourteen fantasy short stories by Irish Fantasy writer, Lord Dunsany, considered a major influence on the work of J. R. R. Tolkien, H. P. Lovecraft, Ursula K. Le Guin and others.

“Come with me, ladies and gentlemen who are in any wise weary of London: come with me: and those that tire at all of the world we know: for we have new worlds here.” – Lord Dunsany, the preface to “The Book of Wonder”

Excellent book for fans of the Harry Potter series.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .The wind soughed, and the great tapers flared, and their obvious fear and the silence of the Sphinx grew more than ever a part of the atmosphere, and bats went restlessly through the gloom of the wind that beat the tapers low.

Then a few things screamed far off, then a little nearer, and something was coming towards us, laughing hideously. I hastily gave a prod to the door that they guarded; my finger sank right into the mouldering wood—there was not a chance of holding it. I had not leisure to observe their fright; I thought of the back-door, for the forest was better than this; only the Sphinx was absolutely calm, her prophecy was made and she seemed to have seen her doom, so that no new thing could perturb her.

But by mouldering rungs of ladders as old as Man, by slippery edges of the dreaded abyss, with an ominous dizziness about my heart and a feeling of horror in the soles of my feet, I clambered from tower to tower till I found the door tha. . . Read More

Community Reviews

This is the thrid book I've read by Lord Dunsany, and he has quickly moved into my top five best authors list. This book is similar to "Time and the Gods", in that it's more of a collection of shorts than a novel. Everyone of them was awesome, I particularly liked the stories that involved men who g

Absolutely charming. Highly recommended.

Geek that I am I actually read this to prepare for the Tolkien Professor’s Faerie & Fantasy podcast seminar that covers the book. I am rather conflicted about Dunsany in general and this book in particular. After finishing the first half I found that _The Book of Wonder_ more or less confirmed for

Dunsany possibly at his peak -- this is a short collection of short stories (mostly in the 3-4 page range) and vignettes, but what stories they are, all told in Dunsany's poetic, King James-inflected prose.

Highlights include Distressing Tale of Thanogbrind the Jeweller, Probable Adventures of the Th

Take the worst kind of second rate fantasy and the worst kind of Alice in Wonderland nonsense, and it turns out two wrongs do make a right :) . This isn't amazing but it does work. The best part is that so many of the tales feel allegorical.. except your never quite sure what they're allegories of :

Dunsany's magic is palpable in all elements in his stories. These short stories, in some cases, left me wanting for more, in others, I was rather bored and just wanting it to end. I believe that were Dunsany truly shines is when he creates a vast world where his characters can evolve and more than t

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