The Well at the World's End

Open Road Media
9
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The epic fantasy novel that defined the genre, now in one volume

As the youngest son of a king, Ralph of Upmeads is expected to forsake adventure for the safety of home. But the call of the Well at the World’s End is too powerful to resist, and Ralph disobeys his parents in order to seek out his true destiny in its magical waters. The journey is long and arduous as the well lies on the far side of a distant mountain range and the lands beyond Upmeads are full of treacherous characters. With the help of a beautiful maiden and an ancient hermit, Ralph completes his quest and raises the cup of immortality and wisdom to his lips. The question is, what will he do with his newfound powers?
 
Widely recognized as the forerunner to modern fantasy, The Well at the World’s End is a magnificent tale of romance and adventure and a major influence on the works of J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis.
 
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About the author

William Morris (1834–1896) was an English author, poet, and artist whose epic works of fantasy established the conventions of the genre and influenced J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis. 
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
Aug 26, 2014
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Pages
462
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ISBN
9781497659759
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Classics
Fiction / Fantasy / Collections & Anthologies
Fiction / Fantasy / Epic
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Twenty-five years ago, New York Times bestselling author Terry Brooks wrote a novel that brought to life a dazzling world that would become one of the most popular fantasy epics of all time, beloved by millions of fans around the world. Ten more Shannara books would follow. Now, for the first time in one elegant collector’s edition hardcover, and featuring an introduction by the author, here are the first three novels of that classic series: The Sword of Shannara, The Elfstones of Shannara, and The Wishsong of Shannara—the beginning of a phenomenal epic of good and evil.

The Sword of Shannara
Long ago, the wars of the ancient Evil ruined the world. In peaceful Shady Vale, half-elfin Shea Ohmsford knows little of such troubles. But the supposedly dead Warlock Lord is plotting to destroy everything in his wake. The sole weapon against this Power of Darkness is the Sword of Shannara, which can be used only by a true heir of Shannara. On Shea, last of the bloodline, rests the hope of all the races.

The Elfstones of Shannara
The magical Ellcrys tree is dying, loosening the spell that bars the Demons from enacting vengeance upon the land. Now Wil Ohmsford must guard the Elven girl Amberle on a perilous quest as she carries one of the Ellcrys’ seeds to a mysterious place where it can be quickened into a powerful new force. But dark on their trail comes the Reaper, most fearsome of all Demons, aiming to crush their mission at any cost.

The Wishsong of Shannara
An ancient Evil is stirring to new life, sending its ghastly Mord Wraiths to destroy Mankind. To win through the vile growth that protects this dark force, the Druid Allanon needs Brin Ohmsford—for she alone holds the magic power of the wishsong. Reluctantly Brin joins the Druid on his dangerous journey. But a prophecy foretells doom, as Evil nurses its plans to trap the unsuspecting Brin into a fate far more horrible than death.

Thus begins Terry Brooks’s thrilling Shannara epic, an unforgettable tale of adventure, magic, and myth.

BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Terry Brooks's The Measure of the Magic.
Ten twisted tales that have haunted generations of readers and writers from H. P. Lovecraft to the creators of the hit TV series True Detective

Nightmare imagery courses through these stories like blood through the veins. In “The Repairer of Reputations,” a Lethal Chamber stands at the edge of Washington Square Park, open to all who can no longer bear the sorrows of life. A Parisian sculptor discovers a liquid solution that can turn any living thing—a lily, a goldfish, a love-struck young woman—to stone in “The Mask.” The unnamed narrator of “In the Court of the Dragon” seeks respite in a church only to be driven mad by organ music that no one else can hear.

Nothing is stranger or more frightening, however, than The King in Yellow, the play that links these tales to one another and to a larger fictional universe containing the ghost stories of Ambrose Bierce, the cosmic horror of H. P. Lovecraft, and the first season of the critically acclaimed HBO series True Detective. Said to induce insanity and despair in those who read it, little is known for certain about the play beyond the ravings of those who have dared to open its pages. They speak of Carcosa, where black stars hang in the heavens. Of twin suns sinking into the Lake of Hali. Of the Yellow Sign and the Pallid Mask. And, in dread-filled whispers or lunatic shouts, of the King in Yellow himself, come to rule the world.

A masterpiece of weird fiction, Robert W. Chambers’s The King in Yellow holds the answer to countless mysteries—some of which might just be better left unsolved.

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Epic romances, fearsome dragons and alien worlds lie between the pages of this volume. Containing more than 35 stories from the early masters of fantasy literature, the narratives here transport the reader to alternate worlds where magic abounds, cosmic terrors lie around the corner and intrepid heroes fight for justice.

Drawing inspiration from Norse, Japanese and Chinese mythology as well as from traditional fairytales and modern fears, the authors collected here span the breadth of the genre. Including tales from William Morris, H. G. Wells, Robert E. Howard and H. P. Lovecraft amongst others, they demonstrate the plethora of imaginative literature that was written in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Many of these tales were foundational works, bringing ideas of the supernatural into the mainstream, and through their efforts creating entirely new genres.

Before Tolkien, there were many writers embracing the realm of fantastic fiction. The man responsible for its origin was George MacDonald (1824-1905), a Calvinist minister and Celtic scholar, who wrote the first true fantasy novel. He was followed by a number of imaginative successors at the end of the 19th century, including H. G. Wells, Arthur Machen, and Ernest Bramah. After the end of World War I, the pulp magazines opened up the genre to a new generation of writers - particularly H. P. Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard - who provided exciting, magical and horrifying tales that fascinated a multitude of readers. By the outbreak of World War II, the outlines of the fantasy genre had been sketched out by these pioneers, and an entirely new type of fiction had been created.

This collection includes stories by:
Robert E. Howard
H. P. Lovecraft
G. G. Pendarves
H. G. Wells
William Morris
Lafcadio Hearn
Abraham Merritt
Arthur Machen
Ernest Bramah
Robert W. Chambers
George MacDonald
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