For all those that have ever read the 2 series of Amber Books, one that follows Cowin’s life and the other that follows Merlin’s life, this is the book for you. It Gives you a visual representation of what you read about. You get to see the castle where Corwin was held captive and the forests that Merlin visited and the sights that he saw. For any one that has read the book you are going to want to read and see what the author himself envisioned while he was writing the books. It is a shame that he was taken from us so soon as we might have been able to see more Amber books if he had not died of cancer.
The book Roger Zelazny’s Visual Guide To Castle Amber was done by Roger Zelazny and Neil Randall and illustrated by Todd Cameron Hamilton and James Clouse. In the book we get to see how the author of the Amber series saw his world. We also are able to see images, drawings, sketches and paintings that were inspired by Roger’s work. It is one of the definitive guides to the kingdom of Amber that shows us the interior of the castle as well as the surrounding area including one map of the city below and its relation to the castle.
In representing the castle we are shown almost every single room in great detail. Each room is fully described and illustrated as well as an interior designers perspective of the room. If you ever wanted to be able to have a room that looked like Cain’s or Julian’s all you would need to do is open the book and see just how it looked. You even are able to see the cell that Corwin was kept after the banquet and his eyes being burned out of his head. You can see the smallness of it and the straw still laying on the floor. There is even a cell that is kept for Roger Zelazny himself. Even though it never explicitly says the name you know it is for the author of the series from the description of the occupant.
The guide is also somewhat personalized as you actually have a tour guide. Flora takes you floor by floor, room by room. She even gives you interesting tidbits about the rooms and their occupants that you just do not find in the original series. Witty at times and series at others she guides you though as if you were taking a tour of the White House itself. Through her you get to see it all and experience it for the first time, even if you have read the books.
One of the really great things about the book is that you can now put a face to the characters in the books. You can see their expressions more clearly and have a sense of who they are. The images that you see and the descriptions of them add more then just the 2 series can show you. Reading and seeing the images in this book make the second reading of The Chronicles of Amber book a whole new experience and makes it almost cinematic in your mind. I would dare say that reading this one book would have anyone wanting the read the whole series from Nine Princes in Amber on. This is the perfect companion to that series and a must for all those that love Amber.