The Forgotten Beasts of Eld: A Brief History

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld is a fantasy novel written by Patricia A. McKillip, first published in 1974. This enchanting story revolves around the life of Sybel, a young sorceress living alone on Eld Mountain, surrounded by mythical creatures. Set in a medieval-like world, the novel takes readers on a magical journey brimming with adventure, love, and self-discovery.

The Premise and Plot

Sybel possesses a unique ability to communicate with and control extraordinary beasts that have been forgotten by the world. Her perspective changes when a baby named Tamlorn is brought to her by a mysterious wizard, Coren. Tamlorn is the child of Drede, the King of Eld, and Coren warns Sybel that the child’s future is in grave danger.

Sybel, torn between her inclination to solitude and the need to protect the child, embarks on a quest to ensure Tamlorn’s safety. As she delves into her own history and confronts her deepest fears, Sybel realizes that her powers can shape the destiny of Eld and its forgotten beasts.

Award-Winning Novel

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld received critical acclaim upon its release, and it continues to be celebrated as a classic in the fantasy genre. It was honored with the prestigious World Fantasy Award in 1975, showcasing McKillip’s talent for imaginative storytelling and richly developed characters.

Critical Reception and Praise

Since its publication, The Forgotten Beasts of Eld has garnered positive reviews from both readers and literary critics. McKillip’s lyrical prose and the captivating world she creates have been lauded for their beauty and immersive quality.

Reviewers have praised the novel for its exploration of themes such as love, power, and the consequences of one’s choices. The characters, particularly Sybel and Tamlorn, are considered to be compelling and wonderfully developed, with their emotional journeys resonating with readers.

The novel’s unique blend of magical creatures, intricate world-building, and thought-provoking storytelling has cemented its place as a beloved work of fantasy literature.

Memorable Characters

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld introduces readers to a cast of memorable characters:


The protagonist of the story, Sybel is a young sorceress gifted with the ability to communicate with mythical beasts. Despite her solitary lifestyle, Sybel possesses great strength and a kind heart.


Tamlorn is the infant son of Drede, the King of Eld, and a pivotal character in the narrative. Sybel’s quest to protect him leads to a profound transformation in her own life.


A mysterious wizard who brings Tamlorn to Sybel, Coren plays a crucial role in unraveling the secrets of Eld. His motivations and true intentions become unveiled as the plot progresses.

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld: A Must-Read for Fantasy Enthusiasts

With its beautifully crafted narrative and delightful characters, The Forgotten Beasts of Eld offers an enchanting reading experience. McKillip’s masterful storytelling and ability to weave together magical elements make this novel a standout in the fantasy genre. Whether you’re a fan of books, audiobooks, e-books, or podcasts, this spellbinding tale is sure to captivate your imagination.

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