More Books From A Fantasy Library, Part 3

Libraries are one of those staples of a certain type of fantasy and horror fiction writing. Hidden away in the musty tomes and scrolls some vital, but forgotten piece of lore waits to be found.  Or perhaps somewhere among the shelves, lays a wealth of esoteric knowledge or rituals that can turn the tide for the heroes of our stories. Or maybe you’ve simply found someone’s old peculiar book collection.

Folks seemed to really enjoy the first set of books, so I’m going to try to make this a semi-regular series! As before, I’ll try to keep them generic enough for use in most fantasy settings, but you may see some personal favorite references creep in from time to time. 🙂

A full “library”, consolidating all posts, past and future, will reside here.

Avulsion and Alluvial Fanning of the Greater Ollent River

Description: This over-sized book features an oilskin cover and pages with a slightly waxy feel to them.  Any amount of handling results in small amounts of extremely fine dust (dried silt) being released. No author is noted on the cover, spine or within and the title appears embossed in a clean design with a slightly curving an undulating flourish.

Summary:  Bound within are numerous maps drawn in a meticulous hand.  Each is dated and annotated with details regarding the slowly shifting and meandering course of the Ollent River over the centuries. Particular attention is given to the region between the city of Chardedum and the river's delta where it meets the sea. Although the contents cover a large expanse of time, the scope, script and tone of the writing never changes, as if it was collected from very consistent sources or was documented by a single researcher.

A Year in the Bosom of the Sanguine Divide

Description:  This book appears to have originally been a common, if well made, blank journal; the sort that have recently come into vogue in the vendor stalls in the markets of larger cities and as gifts among the leisured classes.  The script is delicate but precise.  The quality and color of ink changes over the course of entries, and a few small and somewhat whimsical watercolor drawings appear with some entries.

Summary:  The author has kept notes of various ephemera of their daily life over the course of a year spent in a small, unnamed village in a valley in the mountain range known as the Sanguine Divide.  The author's days appear mostly recreational, and they write at length of their observations of the provincial lives of farmers, shepherds and trades-persons of the area in glowing, almost romantic terms. There is no indication why they are engaged in this visit but it is obvious they are not a local and come from an elevated class of society.

Moontouched or Under Luna's Fist

Description: This tome is bound in a dark red, almost black, leather. Various parts of the cover and corners show scuffs and other signs of rough handling. A series of chunky silver embellishments on the cover have been used to illustrate an unknown constellations of stars and the moon.  A hasp appears to have once allowed the book to be locked, but most of the mechanism has been broken off and is missing.

Summary:  This book appears to be a binding of the collected notes of some poor soul's struggle with lycanthropy.  The pages do not always match in size or composition, but someone has made an attempt to arrange and mount them in a presentable format. Dates of transformations, frank confessionals, legends/lores and attempted cures all appear, with many of the latter not completely explored.  The journal abruptly ends with no indication of the fate of the author.

The Cleaving of the Three Dales

Description: A slightly ostentatious work, this book bears all the hallmarks of a commissioned work. The heraldry of one of the three dales mentioned appears prominently throughout.  The remnants of a short chain bearing clumsy hack marks dangles from the top spine, suggesting it was removed from its resting place in haste or by force.

Summary: The Cleaving covers the history of three small regions that were once a unified province but now exist as unique geographic and cultural entities.  The writer presents a narrative that leaves little ambiguity as to the wrongness of this state of affairs; listing numerous causes that lead up the separation and laying the blame squarely on the other two dales. It ends with a declaration of the importance of unity and a less than subtle justification for re-unification at any cost.

The Black Book of Sunless Cuisine

Description: This medium sized work has an unadorned cover of an unknown wood-like substance. Recessed pieces of hinged metal can be folded out of the covers to serve as a built in book stand. The script is confident and lettered in a black ink that has a slight metallic luster. It is easily readable even under poor light and retains a slight luminescence long after exposure to light.

Summary: The work documents the cooking, cuisine and dining culture of the subterranean world. In addition to numerous recipes, it addresses techniques of the culinary arts beneath the surface world. Two entire sections are dedicated to the acquisition of particularly challenging ingredients, and to comparing & contrasting the cuisine of various races and cultures dwelling underground. The later displays some slight preferences, presumably an indication of the unnamed author's origins?

You may also like...

Leave a Reply