David Eddings

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For criticism see Criticism of David Eddings

Template:Infobox Writer David Eddings (July 7, 1931June 2 2009[1]) was an American author who wrote several best-selling series of epic fantasy novels. David Eddings' wife, Leigh Eddings, was uncredited as co-author on many of his early books, but he later acknowledged that she contributed to them all. She was a credited co-author starting in the mid-1990s.


Template:Citations missing Born in Spokane, Washington, in 1931, Eddings grew up near Puget Sound. In the Rivan Codex, he described a good day in Seattle as "when it isn’t raining up;" rain became a consequent feature in many of his novels. After graduating from high school in 1949, he worked for a year before majoring in speech, drama and English at junior college. Eddings displayed an early talent for drama and literature, winning a national oratorical contest, and performing the male lead in most of his drama productions. He graduated with a BA from Reed College in 1954 and an MA from the University of Washington in 1961. He wrote a novel for a thesis at Reed College before being drafted into the U.S. Army.

After several years as a college lecturer, a failure to receive a pay raise drove Eddings to leave his job, move to Denver and seek work in a grocery store. He also began work on his first published novel High Hunt, the story of four young men hunting deer. Like many of his later novels, it explores themes of manhood and coming of age. Convinced that being an author was his future career, Eddings moved to Spokane where he once again relied on a job at a grocery shop for his funds. He worked on several unpublished novels, including Hunseeker’s Ascent, a story about mountain climbing, which was later burned as Eddings claimed it was, "a piece of tripe so bad it even bored me." Most of his attempts followed the same vein as High Hunt, adventure stories and contemporary tragedies. The Losers, tells the story of God and the Devil, cast in the roles of a one-eyed Indian and Jake Flood. It was not published until June 1992, well after Eddings's success as an author was established, although it was written in the seventies.

Eddings's call to the world of fantasy came from a doodled map he drew one morning before work. This doodle later became the geographical basis for the world of Aloria, but Eddings did not realize it until several years later. Upon seeing a copy of Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, in a bookshop, he allegedly muttered, "Is this old turkey still floating around?" and was shocked to learn that it was in its seventy-eighth printing. Eddings realized that the world of fantasy might hold some promise for his talents, and immediately began to annotate his previously forgotten doodle.

On January 26, 2007 it was reported that Eddings accidentally burned about a quarter of his office, next door to his house, along with his Excalibur sports car, and the original manuscripts for most of his novels. He was flushing the fuel tank of the car with water when he lit a piece of paper and threw it into the puddle to test if it was still flammable.[2]

On February 28, 2007, David Eddings' wife, Leigh Eddings (born Judith Leigh Schall), whom he married in 1962, died following a series of strokes. She was 69.[3]

Eddings resided in Carson City, Nevada, where he died of natural causes on June 2, 2009.[4][5] Dennis, Eddings' brother, confirmed that in his last months, Eddings had been working on a manuscript that was unlike any of his other works, stating "It was very, very different. I wouldn’t call it exactly a satire of fantasy but it sure plays with the genre". The unfinished work, along with his other well renowned manuscripts, will go to his alma mater, Reed College in Portland, Ore. [6]


Eddings created a new style of epic fantasy in which interaction between characters is as important as the action, and they have a more fully developed life.[7] According to the Oxford Good Fiction Guide, he is one of the three most distinguished emulators of J. R. R. Tolkien.[8]


Dates given are those of first publication. Although the author was American, some of his books were first published in Britain, and some of these appeared in America only the next year.

By David Eddings


  • High Hunt (1973) - a story revolving around a hunting expedition that spirals out of control.
  • The Losers (1992, but actually written about the same time as High Hunt) - a story about a man struggling to rebuild his life after an accident. The author describes this as an allegory rather than a novel.

These two books have also been published in one volume under the title Two Novels.

The Belgariad and The Malloreon

{{#invoke:main|main}} The Belgariad is Eddings' first fantasy series; The Malloreon is the sequel. The books follow the adventures of Belgarion, Polgara, Belgarath, and their companions.

The Belgariad series

These have also been published in two omnibus volumes.

The Malloreon series

These have also been published in two omnibus volumes.

The Elenium and The Tamuli

{{#invoke:main|main}} The Elenium and its sequel The Tamuli feature the Pandion Knight Sparhawk and his comrades.

The Elenium series

These have also been published in an omnibus volume.

The Tamuli series

These have also been published in an omnibus volume.

By David and Leigh Eddings

Books related to The Belgariad and The Malloreon

  • Belgarath the Sorcerer (1995) ("the prequel to the Belgariad")
  • Polgara the Sorceress (1997) ("the companion novel to Belgarath the Sorcerer")
  • The Rivan Codex (1998) ("ancient texts of The Belgariad and The Malloreon") – this book consists mainly of the background notes prepared by Eddings prior to writing the books, but also includes some autobiography and comments on the genre, including the recommendation of The Book of Wonder by Lord Dunsany, his favorite fantasy writer.


The Dreamers series

{{#invoke:main|main}} The Dreamers series tells the story of a war between the Elder Gods and their allies and an entity known as the Vlagh.

  • The Elder Gods (2003)
  • The Treasured One (2004)
  • Crystal Gorge (2005)
  • The Younger Gods (2006)


  1. {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}
  2. {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}
  3. {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}
  4. http://www.nevadaappeal.com/article/20090604/NEWS/906039854/1070&ParentProfile=1058
  5. St. James Guide to Fantasy Writers, New York, 1996, page 176
  6. 2005, page 43; the other two are Stephen R. Donaldson and Robert Jordan.

External links


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