David Eddings

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
David Eddings
David Eddings portrait.jpg
Born David Carroll Eddings
(1931-07-07)July 7, 1931
Spokane, Washington
Died June 2, 2009(2009-06-02) (aged 77)
Carson City, Nevada
Occupation Novelist
Alma mater Reed College
Genre Fantasy
Notable works
Spouse Leigh Eddings (1962–2007)

David Eddings (July 7, 1931 – June 2, 2009[1]) was an American fantasy writer. With his wife Leigh, he authored several best-selling epic fantasy novel series, including The Belgariad (1982–84), The Malloreon (1987–91), The Elenium (1989–91), The Tamuli (1992–94) and The Dreamers (2003–06).


Part Cherokee[2] and born in Spokane, Washington to George Wayne Eddings and Theone (Berge) Eddings,[3][4] in 1931, Eddings grew up near Puget Sound in the City of Snohomish.[5] 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 Snohomish high school in 1949, he worked for a year before majoring in speech, drama and English at junior college.[6] 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. He wrote a novel for a thesis at Reed College before being drafted into the U.S. Army.[7] (He had also previously served in the National Guard.[8]) After being discharged in 1956, Eddings attended the graduate school of the University of Washington in Seattle for four years, graduating with an MA in 1961.[9] Eddings then worked as a purchaser for Boeing, where he met his future wife.[7]

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 He worked on several unpublished novels, including Hunseeker’s Ascent, a story about mountain climbing, which was later burned as Eddings claimed it was, "a piece of tripe so bad it even bored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."[10] 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 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.[10]

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. When asked to explain it to the firefighter he said "One word comes to mind. Dumb."[11]

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.[12]

Eddings resided in Carson City, Nevada, where he died of natural causes on June 2, 2009.[13][14] 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.,[15] along with a bequest of $18 million to fund "students and faculty studying languages and literature."[16] Eddings also bequeathed $10 million to National Jewish Medical and Research Center in Denver for pediatric-asthma treatment and research. Eddings's wife Leigh had asthma throughout her life.[17]


Eddings' wife, Leigh Eddings, was uncredited as co-author on several of his early books, but he later acknowledged that she contributed to them all. ("She thought up 'Regina's Song' in that single afternoon, but it took me 20 years to figure out who the point-of-view character was."[2])

She was a credited co-author starting in the mid-1990s. It was Lester del Rey who believed that multi-authorships were a problem and that it would be better if David Edding's name alone appeared on the books.[18]

The Belgariad and The Malloreon[edit]

Main articles: The Belgariad and The Malloreon

The Belgariad is Eddings' first fantasy series; The Malloreon is the sequel. The books follow the adventures of Belgarion, Polgara, Belgarath,their companions and learning the Will and the Word.

The Belgariad series[edit]

  1. Pawn of Prophecy (1982)
  2. Queen of Sorcery (1982)
  3. Magician's Gambit (1983)
  4. Castle of Wizardry (1984)
  5. Enchanters' End Game (1984)

The Malloreon series[edit]

  1. Guardians of the West (1987)
  2. King of the Murgos (1988)
  3. Demon Lord of Karanda (1988)
  4. Sorceress of Darshiva (1989)
  5. The Seeress of Kell (1991)

Books related to The Belgariad and The Malloreon[edit]

The Elenium and The Tamuli[edit]

Main articles: The Elenium and The Tamuli

The Elenium and its sequel The Tamuli feature the Pandion Knight Sparhawk and his comrades.

The Elenium series[edit]

  1. The Diamond Throne (1989)
  2. The Ruby Knight (1990)
  3. The Sapphire Rose (1991)

The Tamuli series[edit]

  1. Domes of Fire (1992)
  2. The Shining Ones (1993)
  3. The Hidden City (1994)

The Dreamers series[edit]

The Dreamers series (written with Leigh Eddings) tells the story of a war between the Elder Gods and their allies and an entity known as the Vlagh.

  1. The Elder Gods (2003)
  2. The Treasured One (2004)
  3. Crystal Gorge (2005)
  4. The Younger Gods (2006)

Standalone fantasy novels[edit]


  • High Hunt (1973) – a story revolving around a hunting expedition that spirals out of control.
  • The Losers (1992) – a story about a man struggling to rebuild his life after an accident.
  • Regina's Song (2000) with Leigh Eddings – a thriller about a woman after the murder of her twin sister.


  1. ^ Robb, P. Bradley (2009-06-03). "David Eddings, Dead at 77". Fiction Matters. Retrieved 2009-06-03. 
  2. ^ a b "Recalling the late David Eddings, Lord of Creation". starlog.com. Archived from the original on 15 August 2009. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  3. ^

    David Eddings at the Notable Names Database

  4. ^ The alt.fan.eddings David Eddings Frequently Asked Questions List
  5. ^ Sorceress of Darshiva
  6. ^ David and Leigh Eddings, The Rivan Codex, ISBN 0006483496, p. 9
  7. ^ a b David and Leigh Eddings, The Rivan Codex, ISBN 0006483496, p. 10
  8. ^ "Starlog Interview with David Eddings – SFBookcase Archive". farris.co.uk. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  9. ^ David and Leigh Eddings, The Rivan Codex, ISBN 0006483496, p. 3
  10. ^ a b David and Leigh Eddings, The Rivan Codex, ISBN 0006483496, p. 11
  11. ^ F.T. Norton (2007). "Novelist accidentally burns down office". Nevada Appeal. Archived from the original on February 2, 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-27. 
  12. ^ "Décès de Leigh Eddings". Elbakin.net. 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-06. 
  13. ^ Neill, Graeme (2009-06-03). "Fantasy writer David Eddings dies". Bookseller.com. Retrieved 2009-06-03. 
  14. ^ "Fantasy writer Eddings dies". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. 2009-06-04. Retrieved 2009-06-05. [dead link]
  15. ^ "Fantasy writer David Eddings dies in Carson City home". The Nevada Appeal. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  16. ^ "Fantasy writer David Eddings leaves Reed College $18 million". The Oregonian. 2009-07-15. 
  17. ^ Trageser, Claire (2009-07-17). "Late author leaves $10 million to National Jewish". Denver Post. 
  18. ^ "David Eddings biography". fantasybookreview.co.uk. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 

External links[edit]