The Plot

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

In A Spell for Chameleon, Bink is forced to leave the land of Xanth, where magic has infused almost everything, because he cannot demonstrate a magical talent. Although the magician of information, the good magician Humphrey, is convinced that Bink has magician-caliber talent, no one can determine the nature of that talent. On his journey to leave Xanth, Bink meets Chameleon and Trent, the magician of transformation. Together they battle the challenges that face the land they each love.

In The Source of Magic, Bink, Humphrey, Grundy Golem, Cherie Centaur, and Jewel the Nymph learn the secret to Xanth’s magic: It derives from the emanations of the demon Xanth, who, because of a penalty in a cosmic game he plays, lies in a state of inertia. Bink frees the demon, causing the land to become mundane again. The magic returns only when the demon decides he needs an eon or two to ponder changes in the rules of the game.

Castle Roogna describes the journey of Dor, Bink, and Chameleon’s son, through time to rescue Jonathan the Zombie Master for Millie the Ghost. With his companion, Jumper the spider, Dor travels back eight hundred years and witnesses the history of Xanth as it unfolds.

In Centaur Aisle, Dor is allowed to be king for a week while King Trent travels to nonmagical Mundania. When Trent does not return, Dor, accompanied by Princess Irene, Grundy Golem, Smash Ogre, and Chet Centaur, goes in search of him. Ogre, Ogre, the first original paperback science-fiction or fantasy book to make The New York Times’ best-seller list, is the story of Smash and his efforts to protect seven females, including Jewel the Nymph’s daughter, Tandy. Smash is helped by Mare Imbrium, one of the Nightmares, who gains half a soul in the process. Her story continues in Night Mare, in which she must help save Xanth from a threat known only as the Horseman.

Dragon on a Pedestal tells the story of Princess Ivy, the three-year-old daughter of King Dor and Queen Irene, her loss of memory, and her encounter with the youthened Gap dragon, Stanley Steamer. Ivy reappears in Crewel Lye: A Caustic Yarn, spending time with Jordan, one of Castle Roogna’s ghosts. The book tells his story. With Ivy’s help, he gains back enough of his body to be reanimated. Ivy and the Gap dragon continue their adventures in Golem in the...

(The entire section is 994 words.)