A new fan-drawn map of Allansia appeared online this week...
Friday, 23 October 2020
Friday, 16 October 2020
"It’s a great idea and I really love Rhi’s writing, comparable to Jonathan Green’s and Ian Livingstone’s. This girl is on fire." ~ JamsPlace.co"If you enjoy FF books, give this a few hours of your time and it will give you hours of enjoyment." ~ Amazon.co.uk
“Her charming writing style and clever, imaginative world-building in Crystal of Storms is a new take on the genre and a joy to read.” ~ Ian Livingstone
Friday, 9 October 2020
“I got the job through the art agency Young Artists, which is now known as Arena,” Miller told Alex Ballingall when he was interviewed for the Fighting Fantazine in 2012. “I did a series of roughs, four I think, and Steve chose the version he liked best. It was an easy process.
“When I did cover work (I’m not often asked these days), I worked maybe one or two up on the published book size. The image would be penciled in, then inked and coloured. I used Illustration board for the most part… I always read the books I did covers for. It made sense in my opinion… I think the first, House of Hell, was the best of the bunch.”
Steve Jackson was so impressed by Miller’s work on House of Hell that he purchased the original painting.
The book was illustrated internally by Tim Sell. However, one of his illustrations was removed from subsequent printings after a number of complaints were received by Puffin Books.
“That did give us a problem,” recalls editor Philippa Dickinson. “We had a lot of complaints. The media suddenly got hold of, ‘was this suitable for children?’ We had various, no doubt very well-meaning people, claiming that we were encouraging children to believe in Satan and Satanism... I do remember one of the people who was interviewed for television said that her child had come out with the mark of the Devil on his body and when she threw the book into the fire the marks on his body disappeared.
“It was of that time, and it was because the books were so successful, and boys were getting so obsessed, so what were we doing? They were being obsessed by something, so this can’t be healthy, because they’re obsessed. But they’re reading! What are you complaining about?"House of Hell was released in the US it was renamed as House of Hades, since ‘Hell’ was a more common swear-word with religious connotations in America than it was in the UK.
“In the middle of all of this craze, and all of the people saying that we were corrupting children, we also had as many, if not more people saying, ‘Thank God! My son is finally reading.’" says Dickinson. "Boys were reading because they saw it as a game, not a book. They were reading because everybody else was doing it.”
This wasn’t the only time that Fighting Fantasy courted controversy. The FF series has had its fair share of vehemently outspoken enemies in the UK.
“The Evangelical Alliance published an eight page warning guide about the potential danger of reading Fighting Fantasy leading to devil worship!” says a clearly stunned Livingstone. “And a worried housewife in deepest suburbia reportedly said on radio that after having read one of my books, her son levitated. Kids thought, ‘Great – for £1.25 I can fly!’ This was all wonderful PR for Fighting Fantasy.”
Did you know...?
The dedication written by Steve Jackson for the Wizard Books edition of House of Hell reads:
Games Night —
to Clive, Ian, Mark, Peter and Skye.
May their Dinner Winnerships be few.
But always more than mine...
The list of names are the members of an exclusive gaming group that’s been running since the mid-1990s, and which includes Peter Molyneux of Lionhead Studios fame among its membership. Games Night is still a regular event, and at the end of each season a cup is awarded.
Friday, 2 October 2020
Back in print now is Ian Livingstone's Return to Firetop Mountain, featuring brand new cover art by Robert Ball, and the original internal illustrations by fan-favourite Martin McKenna.