Headsup: The Art of Magic the Gathering – Amonkhet

Even if you aren’t a gamer, you’ve probably at least heard of Magic: The Gathering, the very first fantasy trading card game which was created by Wizards of the Coast back in 1993.  Over the past two decades, the game has grown to include over seventy-five expansion sets and even has an organized international tournament system (including professional players who can win tens of thousands of dollars from a single tournament).  It has also won multiple awards, including a Mensa Award and multiple Origins Awards, and is available in eleven different languages.

If you are one of the twenty million Magic fans (in more than seventy countries),  you’ll be happy to know that The Art of Magic: The Gathering – Amonkhet, the fourth volume in a series of coffee table books featuring the award-winning artwork in the beloved game, is now available.  In this volume, readers meet the inhabitants of the desert oasis of Amonkhet, whose lives revolve around a series of trials completed in preparation for the return of the God-Pharaoh.  This 240-page hardcover book features full-color illustrations from a variety of artists, including Cliff Childs, Winona Wilson, Christine Choi and Adam Paquette, among others.  In addition to the beautiful artwork, Senior Game Designer James Wyatt also provides some insight into the mysterious and intoxicating world of Amonkhet.

The Art of Magic: The Gathering – Amonkhet is currently available on Amazon for $27.17; not bad considering how hefty a book this is (it weighs around four pounds and measures almost two feet wide when open)…a nice gifting choice for anyone in love with the art of the game (for some sneak peeks of the illustrations, see below).


Syrio Forel Lives!

Academy of the Sword

BibliOdyssey has posted some fascinating pages from the 1630 book, Academy of the Sword. Or rather, its full title is:

Academy of the Sword. Wherein is demonstrated by mathematical rules on the foundation of a mysterious circle, the theory and practice of the true and heretofore unknown secrets of handling arms on foot and horseback.

Apparently the horseback portion was never to be realized, however–sort of like History of the World Part II. This book is pretty damn rare in its original form, apparently: they report it can go for $50,000. If I were you and wanted it, though, I’d stick with the re-release.


Dollar Dreadful: Sort of Like Dollar General, But Totally Different

Dollar Dreadful snippet: Archibald Grey

Brass Goggles points out that penny dreadfuls are on their way back in, but now it’s Dollar Dreadful (thanks to inflation). There’s previews online now and the full online shop will be hitting soon, they tell us, and it looks like a veritable hoot. How can you resist stuff with titles like “Octavious Watt and His Pneumatic Bride” and “Archibald Grey,” who has a Skeleton Key which opens everything, including a way into the land of the dead? Answer: you cannot.

We’ll try to yell when the shop goes live.


J.K. Rowling Open Book Tour: Win to See Her at Carnegie Hall

J.K. Rowling

How do you get to Carnegie Hall? The answer is: write books, sell fifty quintillion copies, have them turned into mega-movies, and have the whole thing turned into a theme park. Practice? Bah.

So yes, J.K. Rowling is going to be at Carnegie Hall on Friday, October 19th. She’s going to read from Book 7, do a Q&A, and sign copies.

That’s nice, you say, but we’re busy reading Book 7 and underlining the good bits. Why should we care?

Because a thousand folks can win a pair of tickets to be there.

July 30th, the contest opens up. Anybody 7 and up can enter the contest at www.scholastic.com/harrypotter. For all the details, the rest of press release follows after the jump.

If you win because we pointed this out to you, send us a pic of you at the event. That’s all we ask.

Update: If you want a direct-direct link to the contest, go here. Thanks to Susan P. for passing that our way.


For Those of You About to Return to School, Well, Sucks to Be You

Textbooks!  AHHH!!!

But that’s okay, because I went through college on the five year plan and speaking for my fellow staff members, we have earned the right to let out a huge whew because it’s you tromping off to class in just a few weeks and not us.

People always ask me if I intend to go back to school, as though my first run through the educational gauntlet didn’t fuck me up enough.

But to the point: for those of you who are unfortunate enough to not have your degrees yet, there’s two things we know you need.

1) You need to stay awake and stay (relatively) sane. You know that we’re here for you in spirit with all the crazy crap we can muster for when you’re up at three in the morning and you need a good stress reliever before you finish that paper.

2) You need money. While we can’t help you there, because we need money too, we found a way we both can win. Amazon is having a 30% off new textbooks sale for a limited time. And they have used textbooks for up to 90% off. You don’t spend so much, we get some kickbacks. Everybody happy.

Back when we were your age, all we could do was drive to the off campus used book store and pray that somebody had unloaded that 900-page tome on the Roman Empire so we could save some coin. But you whippersnappers have choices. Go here to check out the Textbook store at Amazon.

Oh, and you’ll need either this link or this link. And remember, Peter: with crushing amounts of caffeine comes crushing amounts of responsibility. Thanks.