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Since its original publication, the mini-series has also been published in a single-volume collection under the Vertigo imprint with an introduction by author Roger Zelazny. It tells the story of a young boy who has the potential to become the world's greatest magician. The Books of Magic began life when DC Comics decided to highlight some of their mystical characters across the range. They initially approached writer J.

DeMatteis to script a prose book with illustrations from Jon J Muth , Kent Williams , Dave McKean and others, but when it reached the stage of confirming the artists' involvement, the suggested artists all declined to be involved. At that stage, DeMatteis also decided to step back, [2] and DC instead approached popular writer Neil Gaiman and asked him to come up with a four-issue prestige-format series "about our magic characters".

White 's The Once and Future King , [5] Gaiman created an everyman character of a twelve-year-old boy called Timothy Hunter , who would need to be given an extensive tour of the DC magical universe before being able to decide if he should embrace or reject his destiny as the world's greatest magician.

Gaiman used the four issues to formally split the structure of the story, and allow for a different artist to draw each issue:. This structure allowed Gaiman great scope to include various magical characters from across DC's ranges, as well as reintroducing characters that weren't currently in print. In his introduction to the collected edition, author Roger Zelazny also noted that the structure bore some similarity to the key story points of the mythic structure identified by Joseph Campbell 's The Hero with a Thousand Faces - although he did allow that this might come from Gaiman's intimate knowledge of the same source material rather than a deliberate attempt to follow Campbell's guidelines.

Tim Hunter made the ultimate choice to pursue magic in the Mister E miniseries by K. Jeter when he was forced to use magic to prevent Mister E from killing him. Berger struggled to find a writer suitable for the project, however, with writers like Dick Foreman struggling to handle the character of Tim. Berger eventually approached John Ney Rieber after having seen some of his work, convinced that he would be able to meet the challenge of developing Tim into a fully rounded character. Rieber was asked to come up with a story outline for the proposed series, but these were rejected by Berger and DC.

Still convinced that Rieber was the writer for the job, however, Berger asked him to persevere: he tried "several times to come up with something different, but it still didn't thrill anyone". At one point, Rieber himself tried to withdraw from the project, but Berger was still convinced that he could do it, and when the Vertigo The Children's Crusade event was being planned, she asked him to write one of the chapters to reintroduce Tim to the DC universe.

It introduced several characters created by Rieber that would be developed in the later ongoing series, such as Tim's biological father Tamlin, as well as starting off some of the ongoing book's storylines. The annual saw Neil Gaiman's first credit as "creative consultant" for The Books of Magic , a position which DC Comics paid him to carry out despite the fact that even when he did make comments on the script, he was told that it was too late for anything to be changed.

By the time the series launched, the name had returned to The Books of Magic and a regular rotating team of artists Gross, Gary Amaro and Peter Snejbjerg was put in place to provide artwork for alternating storylines.

Research Interests

Of course he gets on my nerves. He's a lot like someone I spent years learning not to be". With Rieber leaving, the series editor Stuart Moore championed Gross to take over scripting duties because "I knew he could do it. He's got a great sense of story and character". Gross was then asked if he could expand his ideas into an actual story, and plotted a six issue story that he thought might be used as a "filler" until a new writer could be found.

This soon expanded into plots for Gross' entire 25 issue run, [9] despite Gross initially being nervous that his writing efforts would be unfavorably compared to those of Gaiman and Rieber by the series' fans.

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As well as writing, Gross continued to provide artwork for the book, juggling this with a separate career teaching a class in Comic Illustration at Minneapolis College of Art and Design. From the beginning of Gross' run, there were tentative plans for the comic to rest after it reached its 75th issue.


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Such a break would be used to allow the character of Tim Hunter to grow up a little before resuming his story - Gross had ideas for this later run to explore the character's relationship with the women in his life, through his relationship with his late mother. It was also announced that the new mini-series would be followed by an unnamed new ongoing monthly series, [14] which was eventually announced as Hunter: The Age of Magic.

The original mini-series concentrated on Timothy Hunter's introduction to the world of magic by the Trenchcoat Brigade the Phantom Stranger , Doctor Occult , Mister E , and John Constantine , who are aware that the boy has the potential to be the world's greatest magician, but that his allegiance to good or evil is undecided.

Equally, he could turn from the world of magic completely and be lost to either side. The Trenchcoat Brigade see it as their duty to resolve the uncertainty around Tim's fate one way or another. They take him from the birth of the universe all the way through to its eventual death, ostensibly teaching him about the possibilities - and the price - of wielding magic before he decides whether to embrace his destiny.

Following his misadventures, Tim decides that the price is too high As John Ney Rieber began the ongoing series, he used the stories to focus on telling Tim's story: he summed up his run later by saying " The Books of Magic aren't about Cool. They're about Tim". However, this story was merely the backdrop to a more personal story for Tim, as he discovered that the Falconer Tamlin who kidnapped Tim during the events of the Arcana: The Books of Magic Annual was actually his true father, and that the Faerie Queen Titania might be his mother: [15] this revelation first appeared in a gaming guide to the DC Universe, possibly misinterpreting a scene in the original miniseries where Titania refers to Tim as "my son".

Bindings also brings Tim into conflict with a Manticore , who attempts to convince Tim of the non-existence of magic before hunting and killing him. Tim revives and releases a unicorn that has been similarly hunted, and destroys the Manticore - but not before he is poisoned by it. The boy nearly dies, until his father Tamlin performs a magic ritual which allows him to die in Tim's place.

The boy recovers and returns to Earth with Titania's curses in his ears, having to come to terms with the revelation that the people he thought of as his parents - a mother who died in a car crash caused by his one-armed, grieving father - might be no relation to him at all.

Partly the Faerie storyline in Bindings was written to appease DC's desire for a "big" story to launch the new series with: Rieber's original starting point was to be the Summonings storyline instead, [6] introducing Tim's first girlfriend Molly O'Reilly and demonstrating the writer's desire that the stories should be about "a realm that has never been mapped by the Royal Geographic Society and never will be.

People who've lost touch with the place call it 'Adolescence'". Rieber's run also contained several stories about the need to stay connected with the world that you live in. Several of his characters, including Tim, seek to avoid their problems in the real world by escaping into fantasy, but Rieber later explained "Wishing never solves anything in the Books. Have you noticed? At best, it gets you into trouble.

City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3) by Cassandra Clare

About the only thing you can do in the Books that's more dangerous than wishing is surrendering to fantasies that others have constructed. Sir Timothy is under the mistaken impression that he is Barbatos' master and that he lives in grand luxury, when in truth Barbatos is manipulating him for his own ends and Sir Timothy lives in a cardboard box in a back alley. Sir Timothy and Barbatos return to Tim's time from because Tim is the last boy in the multiverse who could possibly grow up to be Sir Timothy, and they intend to ensure that he does.

However, their plans are thwarted without Tim even being aware of them, as he has a guardian angel called Araquel. Unfortunately, Araquel is chained between Heaven and Hell for having had a daughter called Nikki with Khara. Khara defeats Sir Timothy on Tim's behalf. The intervention doesn't mean that Tim is safe, however, as he has come to the attention of the last member of the Cult of the Cold Flame, a magician called Martyn. Martyn attempts to seduce Tim into becoming his servant using a succubus called Leah, using magic to make Tim's father spontaneously combust so that the boy is alone and vulnerable.

Tim is saved once from Leah by the arrival of Molly, as the succubus is touched by the genuine love between the two Tim's salvation from Martyn comes in an unlikely form when Sir Timothy and Barbatos kill the magician to protect their own interests in the boy. This leaves Leah without a master, a position that she attempts to make Tim fill before the young magician proves his worth by setting her free. She leaves England to see where her new freedom - and Martyn's car - will take her. The next story arc followed on almost directly from the Arcana Annual , bringing back two of the children of Free Country: Daniel, the chimney sweep, and Marya, the girl who was sent to bring Tim to Free Country but decided to stay in the real world after she did.

Marya has become friends with Molly, and gets invited on her and Tim's first date - but panics Tim when she tells Molly that her boyfriend is a magician, causing him to accidentally freeze them both with magic. He eventually manages to unfreeze them again, but fall prey to a monster of black, choking soot.

The monster is Daniel, expelled from Free Country and transformed by the Victorian era cyborg the Reverend Slagingham. Slagingham is collecting an army of down-and-outs, capturing their souls in magical contraptions: one of his minions, Gwendolyn, even manages to trick the Faerie King Auberon into surrendering his soul, leaving Titania's husband her helpless servant. The Reverend falls foul to Tim thanks to the intervention of one of his childhood imaginary friends made real, Awn the Blink, who has an amazing knack for fixing broken things. Daniel, meanwhile, gives up his attack when Marya rejects his affections.

All that remains is for Tim to help return Auberon's soul to his body and return him, changed by his experiences, to his wife's side. For his trouble, Auberon tells Tim that Titania cannot possibly be his mother, since the boy has "not a drop" of Faerie blood in him.

Gwendolyn decides to stay and look after Tim while his father makes a miraculous recovery at the hands of the strange Mister Vasuki, eventually returning home after sharing a taxi with a young mother and her son Cyril. Tim learns that he is an "Opener" and has unconsciously been making his fantasies real all his life—whether they be simple imaginary friends or entire worlds—Tim introduces Molly to some more of his imaginary friends made real, Tanger and Crimple, who live in a tree on some wasteland near Tim's house.

The wasteland opens out into an entire magical world created unconsciously by Tim's childhood fantasies, but unfortunately as Molly is exploring it with Crimple she ends up being kidnapped and taken to Hell. Tanger and Tim head into Hell to rescue Molly and Crimple, who are being held by the strict governess Miss Vuall - the trainer of the multiple Mollies who are Sir Timothy Hunter's docile and dutiful companions. Sir Timothy, however, no longer needs the girls, as he has succeeded in releasing himself from Barbatos' control - only to be persuaded by a gang of dragons to become one of them because of his sadness and self-hatred.

Molly and Crimple best Miss Vuall, and as Tim arrives the two children's love puts the finishing touches to her corner of Hell. However, Barbatos drags the children and the dragon Sir Timothy into another layer of Hell, where he attempts to salvage victory from defeat by trapping the two children in a fairy tale world where brave knights kill dragons. Meeting the real Molly again, Sir Timothy is overcome with guilt and tells her his life story in the hope that she can prevent her Tim from becoming him.

Tim, meanwhile, manages to see through all of Barbatos' attempts to trick him, and eventually brings the fairy tale world crashing down around their ears. Sir Timothy dies protecting Molly from the destruction unleashed by Tim, and the two children are reunited. As they return home, they leave Barbatos trapped in the ruins of the world he created, [18] although he does briefly escape again. Following Molly and Tim's disappearance, both find themselves grounded and banned from seeing each other.

Molly manages to sneak out and ends up around a camp-fire discussing Tim with Marya and a mysterious tattooist who says she wants to help. The tattooist demonstrates her experience of both men and magic when Marya is again threatened by the arrival of Daniel: she removes the black soot that has transformed him, and changes him into the animal his soul most suits - a slow-witted but loyal puppy, that Marya happily adopts.

Molly tells her companions about Sir Timothy Hunter, unaware that Tim has transformed himself into a cat and is listening in. The tattooist is aware, however: she traps Tim in his cat body long enough to take him to her home and thoroughly examine his soul, intending to do the same to him that she did with Daniel. She has to change her plan when she is shocked to discover that Tim has no "inner animal" and that he is just a normal, healthy teenage boy. Soon after, Gwen decides it is time to move on when Tim's father begins a tentative relationship with Holly, the woman from the taxi.

Almost immediately, Holly's son Cyril becomes a target of a demon's malign interest, and rescuing him helps Tim to decide that his presence is putting those he loves at risk. He runs away.

City of Glass

Molly, meanwhile, has been sent to visit her grandmother, a formidable old woman with a touch of second sight. Whilst up on Leanen Hill at her grandmother's suggestion, Molly learns that Tim has run away and resolves to find him again. She attempts to attract a fairy in the hope that they will grant her wish, but when she succeeds in drawing the Amadan to her, she accidentally challenges him to a contest to see who is the greatest fool.

Knowing something of the Fair Folk from her grandmother, Molly knows that if she eats Faerie food she will never be able to return home: touching the ground would wither her and eating real food would starve her, so she would be forced to stay in Faerie.


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Instead, she attempts to grow her own real food, her efforts attracting the attention of the Faeries, and her stubbornness attracting the ire of Titania: the Queen tricks Molly into eating Faerie food by making her crops grow overnight.