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Other titles of interest.
The Annotated White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle's Greatest Work

This book is something of a mystery. We've all heard the timeless stories of King Arthur, Ivanhoe, or even Robin Hood - enduring tales of medieval adventure and romance that are justly famous. In The White Company, we encounter another engaging story of the Middle Ages that is all but forgotten today. A rare treasure; every bit as exciting and entertaining as these others. Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of Sherlock Holmes and the legendary dinosaur novel, The Lost World, regarded The White Company as possibly his finest work. We think you'll agree...

Read simply as a rollicking adventure tale, this story speeds along like a thrill-ride at an amusement park. But this ride is taken through a vividly and accurately recreated world of the late middle ages, a world of strange customs populated by fascinating and often humorous characters. The effect on the reader is a rich experience of almost having lived the story; and a sneaking suspicion that there is more to some of this "background detail" than at first meets the eye.

And this is true. Much like the world-building of Tolkien, or George R.R. Martin, the setting of the story brings a tangible realness to the action; only in this case, the author's talent is not creating a fictional world, but re-imagining the real one. Much of The White Company actually happened, and the places visited and the battles fought are historical. One need not lose oneself in these details, they never intrude themselves on the adventure at hand, but they present a unique opportunity to open a portal to another age and see it brought vividly to life again.

Doug Elliott and Roy Pilot have accomplished something remarkable in their own right with this edition. Knowing that Conan Doyle took great pains to ensure everything in the novel would accurately depict life and events of the time, they have meticulously examined the story line-by-line and annotated every obscure term or interesting detail. The effect is rather like having a kindly, retired professor of Medieval studies sitting quietly in a nearby armchair, ready to answer your every question or regale you with fascinating details. The annotators have also drawn together a rich assortment of historical illustrations. Every obscure instrument of war or ancient artifact is depicted, along with color illustrations of the heraldry and costuming.

Rounding out this definitive edition are the beautiful color illustrations by N. C. Wyeth and a Foreword by author and film-maker Nicholas Meyer. The Annotated White Company is a landmark work that reintroduces this neglected classic to a new generation.

"What a terrific work of scholarship!"
- Michael Dirda, The Washington Post Book World

Wessex Press
426 pp., illustrated, soft-cover, $48.95