Fantasy master David Eddings dies aged 77Colleagues pay tribute to self-effacing pioneer of the doorstopping fantasy-novel series
guardian.co.uk, Thursday 4 June 2009 11.45 BST
The man who started the craze for doorstopper-sized fantasy series, David Eddings, has died aged 77.
Prolific and bestselling, Eddings was the author of more than 25 books, many of them written with his wife Leigh Eddings, who passed away in 2007. Best known for his Belgariad and Mallorean series, which follow the adventures of the orphaned farm boy Garion as he fulfils an ancient prophecy, Eddings turned to fantasy after he spotted a copy of The Lord of the Rings in a bookshop, and saw that it was in its 73rd printing.
He'd already written a thriller about deer hunting, High Hunt, and had begun drawing a map of an imaginary world while writing another contemporary novel that hadn't been working out. After his epiphany with Tolkien, when he realised the fantasy field was under-served but potentially extremely lucrative, he began to use the map to plot the world of Garion, Belgarath the Sorcerer and his daughter Polgara, and their fellow cast of thousands.
Despite his success, Eddings was known for his humble nature. "His huge worldwide success and fame did not change Dave at all," said his long-term publisher at HarperCollins, Jane Johnson, herself a fantasy author. "He was unfailingly self-effacing on the subject of his success, once saying: 'I'm never going to be in danger of getting a
Nobel prize for literature, I'm a storyteller, not a prophet. I'm just interested in a good story'."View Complete News