Another day, another post in the A to Z Challenge!
Today we have:
X is for Xanth Dragons
Work commitments over lunch meant this post is a little later than my 1:05pm CST posting time today, but that’s okay! This awesome painting is called Xanth: Luck of the Draw by American professional artist Julie Dillon. From her deviantart site:
This my first official cover art, for the next book in Piers Anthony’s Xanth series, Luck of the Draw, which will be released December 2012.
I’ve been a little anxious about this, since I am stepping in for the wonderful Darrell Sweet, who unfortunately died last December. He was an amazing artist with a long career of fantastic and iconic covers, and I hope I can do him and fans of the Xanth series justice.
I remember reading a lot of the light-hearted fantasy series set in the magical world of Xanth when I was younger, starting with the first book, A Spell for Chameleon. Now looking at the full series list on the Wikipedia page, I think I made it through about book 18 — but now I realize that the series never ended, and Piers Anthony kept writing in this world! Luck of the Draw and this cover were book 36 of the series, and books 40 and 41 are scheduled for release at some point in the future!
The Wiki also has a pretty good synopsis of the series, in case you’ve never picked it up:
Each human character in Xanth is born with a unique magical ability, called a talent. With the exception [some creatures], these abilities never repeat exactly in individuals throughout the entire history of Xanth (although nearly identical talents show up on occasion). Though many talents are limited in scope (called the “spot-on-a-wall” variety), the series focuses mainly on individuals with “Magician” caliber abilities (one of the criteria for serving as King of Xanth).
In addition to the human characters, Xanth is populated by centaurs, demons, dragons, fauns, gargoyles, goblins, golems, harpies, merfolk, naga,nymphs, ogres, zombies, curse fiends, and other fictional beasts. Though initially introduced as obstacles to the human characters, some individuals from those groups become main characters in later books of the series.
I think I’m going to have to check back in with Xanth, if I can fit it in with the other series I’m reading and all the writing I hope to start getting done in May!
Thanks for reading — I can’t believe this challenge is almost over!! Stay creative!