Interview of Jonathan Blake (cont')
RG: Most Lone Wolf fans also have a interest in other fantasy works. How do you think Dever's writing style compares to other notable fantasy authors?
JB: Although a literature teacher might balk at gamebooks as a work of art, I think that a lot can be said for Dever. Few other authors have created such an enveloping world. Perhaps some of that is due to the second person nature of gamebooks but I love the settings in his books. I think some of this came from his background as a DM. He's never written a novel so it's hard to compare [him to other authors] but what he does, he does better than anyone else.
RG: Well said. In that vein, what is it that elevates the Lone Wolf series above other gamebooks?
JB: The settings and the ongoing story-line. I don't know of any other series that has made such a commitment to one character and setting. The series has momentum that carries the reader through and makes you actually care what the outcome is.
RG: What then is your attitude toward the Legends of Lone Wolf novelisations?
JB: I really liked the first five that were published in the US (up to Hunting Wolf). It added depth to the plot by giving behind-the-scenes looks at things outside of Lone Wolf's perceptions. I've read a couple of the later Legends series but my interest was not held. I think they departed too far from the original Lone Wolf. On their own, they might have been more enjoyable but their main attraction to me was how they related to the gamebooks. Paul Barnett understandably wanted to create something of his own. On the whole, however, I'm glad that they were made.
RG: Back the the 'net for a moment. You mentioned that the Kai Monastery was a big influence on your own site design, and that you borrowed some elements presented there, but how did you ultimately come up with the Oasis theme?
JB: The idea of setting a website in Magnamund (which was Julian's idea) was wonderful. The next step was to decide where in Magnamund. It was natural, since I live in Las Vegas, to go with a desert scene. I really appreciate the desert and I have fond childhood memories of playing in a large desert near my house. My Kai name, Desert Lynx, also derived from this.
RG: Within the past year there have been many other websites devoted to Lone Wolf crop up on the 'net. Which is your favorite Lone Wolf related website and why?
JB: I still like the Monastery but that's too easy an answer.
It's a hard question to answer because there are several that I enjoy. I would have to say that the Lyris Outpost is my next answer because of the info found there and how well it's designed. It's an awkward question because I've tried not to discourage other webmasters who are in the early development stages. You should see the early version of the Oasis that I've put up!
Lone Wolf © TM Joe Dever 1984-1999.