practical guide to monsters
by nina hess.
i've been really looking forward to this, & after all the wait, it is finally here, & worth the wait. i was a big fan of the practical guide to dragons
when it came out, & it sold better than decently, so i hope to count similar coup with this book. moreover, i like it better than ...to dragons
; there is a lot more variety, & they didn't skimp on weirdness like oygtughs & shit. the one criticism i do have is that the inherent racism of the dnd mythos is pretty close to the surface here. i've said for years that under any critical lens goblins, orcs & their ilk are all pretty clearly "not white" people. aboriginal americans, colonized africans, that sort of thing. i mean, the game is predicated on breaking into their houses
& taking their stuff; it is as plain as the nose on your face! or as the guide...
puts it, the "broad noses" on the goblin's "flat faces." woah, not to put too fine a point on it, eh guys? yeah, but it still remains a repository for dungeons & dragons
mythology, so it is hard to get up on arms. just something to keep your eyes open for, & for the record? making a "noble savage" half-orc isn't making things any better!