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Larry Elmore

Author of The Snarfquest Graphic Novel

34+ Works 272 Members 5 Reviews

About the Author

Larry Elmore Larry Elmore is one of the most well known fantasy illustrators in the world of science fiction. He has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Western Kentucky University. After college, he spent two years in the army, before becoming a full time free lance illustrator. Elmore has worked show more for TSR. Inc. sine 1981. He became a freelance illustrator in 1987, doing covers for comics, computer games, magazines and fantasy and science fiction books. While at TSR., Elmore did covers for "Dungeons and Dragons," "AD&D," and his most well known work, the "Dragonlance Saga." Elmore has also worked for other publishers such as, Baen Books, Bantam, Warren Books, ACE/Berkeley, Doubleday and Del Rey. He is the co-author of "Runes of Autumn" and creator of the "Sovereign Stone" series. In the gaming industry, Elmore has freelanced for TSR Inc., FASB, Mayfair Games, Game Designer's Workshop, White Wolf, Iron Crown Enterprises, Dragon Magazine, Amazing Magazine, Wizard Press, D.C. Comics, First Comics, Eclipse COmics and Frank Frazetta's Fantasy Illustrations. (Bowker Author Biography) show less
Image credit: Jaqen


Works by Larry Elmore

The Snarfquest Graphic Novel (1987) 96 copies, 2 reviews
Twenty Years of Art: Elmore (2002) 35 copies, 1 review
Runes of Autumn (1996) 30 copies
Women of the Woods (2004) 9 copies
The Complete Elmore — Author — 6 copies
SnarfQuest RPG Wprldbook — Cover artist — 5 copies, 1 review
Badger #17 (1986) — Illustrator — 4 copies
The Chronicles of Ramlar (2006) — Illustrator — 4 copies, 1 review

Associated Works

Dragons of Spring Dawning (1985) — Cover artist, some editions — 4,598 copies, 29 reviews
Dragons of Winter Night (1985) — Cover artist, some editions — 4,339 copies, 34 reviews
Time of the Twins (1986) — Cover artist, some editions — 3,484 copies, 28 reviews
Dragons of Summer Flame (1995) — Interior art, some editions — 2,399 copies, 8 reviews
1632 (2000) — Cover artist, some editions — 2,201 copies, 67 reviews
The Legend of Huma (1988) — Interior art, some editions — 1,505 copies, 8 reviews
The Magic of Krynn (1987) — Cover artist, some editions — 1,468 copies, 8 reviews
The Soulforge (1998) — Cover artist, some editions — 1,370 copies, 6 reviews
Kender, Gully Dwarves, and Gnomes (1987) — Cover artist, some editions — 1,290 copies, 5 reviews
Player's Handbook (2nd Edition) (1989) — Illustrator, some editions — 1,289 copies, 2 reviews
Love and War (1987) — Cover artist, some editions — 1,232 copies, 5 reviews
The Will of the Wanderer (1988) — Illustrator, some editions — 1,128 copies, 8 reviews
Oath of Swords (1995) — Cover artist, some editions — 1,089 copies, 14 reviews
Stormblade (1988) — Cover artist, some editions — 1,038 copies, 5 reviews
Weasel's Luck (1988) — Cover artist, some editions — 890 copies, 5 reviews
The War God's Own (1998) — Cover artist, some editions — 889 copies, 9 reviews
Born to Run (1992) — Cover artist, some editions — 873 copies, 11 reviews
Chicks in Chainmail (1995) — Cover artist, some editions — 741 copies, 11 reviews
The Reign of Istar (1992) — Cover artist, some editions — 649 copies, 1 review
Surrender None (1990) — Cover artist, some editions — 619 copies, 6 reviews
The War of the Lance (1992) — Cover artist, some editions — 616 copies, 2 reviews
The Cataclysm (1992) — Cover artist, some editions — 598 copies, 3 reviews
Castle of Deception (1992) — Cover artist, some editions — 585 copies, 1 review
Monster Manual II (1st edition) (1983) — Illustrator — 579 copies, 1 review
Legacy of the Darksword (1997) — Cover artist, some editions — 563 copies, 4 reviews
The Dragons of Krynn (1994) — Cover artist, some editions — 536 copies, 2 reviews
Did You Say Chicks?! (1998) — Cover artist, some editions — 488 copies, 3 reviews
Chicks 'N Chained Males (1999) — Cover artist, some editions — 470 copies, 7 reviews
Fortress of Frost and Fire (1993) — Cover artist, some editions — 467 copies, 2 reviews
Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana: A Visual History (2018) — Cover artist, some editions — 462 copies, 8 reviews
The Chick is in the Mail (2000) — Cover artist, some editions — 419 copies, 4 reviews
The Kagonesti (1995) — Cover artist, some editions — 418 copies, 1 review
The Irda (1995) — Cover artist, some editions — 402 copies, 1 review
Night of the Eye (1994) — Cover artist, some editions — 398 copies
Prison of Souls (1993) — Illustrator, some editions — 383 copies
Mathemagics (1996) — Cover artist, some editions — 344 copies, 6 reviews
Mother of Demons (1997) — Cover artist, some editions — 337 copies, 5 reviews
The Medusa Plague (1994) — Cover artist, some editions — 332 copies
The Dragons (1996) — Cover artist — 317 copies
The Seventh Sentinel (1995) — Cover artist, some editions — 315 copies
Wilderness Survival Guide (1986) — Illustrator — 310 copies
The Dargonesti (1995) — Cover artist, some editions — 305 copies, 2 reviews
Son of the Black Sword (2015) — Cover artist, some editions — 294 copies, 9 reviews
Reap the Whirlwind (1989) — Illustrator, some editions — 284 copies, 3 reviews
Wrath of Ashar: The First Book of The Kingdoms (The Book of the Kingdoms, Book 1) (1988) — Cover artist, some editions — 262 copies, 2 reviews
Firedrake: The Dragonrealm (1989) — Cover artist, some editions — 252 copies, 6 reviews
Forward the Mage (2002) — Cover artist, some editions — 239 copies, 3 reviews
The Cage (1989) — Cover artist, some editions — 233 copies, 1 review
The Usurper: The Second Book of The Kingdoms (1989) — Cover artist, some editions — 216 copies
Saber and Shadow (1992) — Cover artist, some editions — 203 copies, 1 review
Greyhawk Adventures (1988) — Illustrator, some editions — 190 copies
The Temple of Elemental Evil (T1-4 ) (1985) — Illustrator — 184 copies, 1 review
The Forlorn (1999) — Cover artist, some editions — 182 copies, 6 reviews
Forgotten Realms Adventures (1990) — Illustrator — 182 copies
Shadow's Daughter (1991) — Cover artist, some editions — 159 copies, 1 review
The Rose and the Skull (1999) — Cover artist, some editions — 158 copies
The Children's Hour (1991) — Cover artist, some editions — 152 copies, 1 review
Down in the Bottomlands (And Other Places) (1999) — Cover artist, some editions — 151 copies, 4 reviews
Werenight (1994) — Cover artist, some editions — 143 copies, 1 review
Prince of the North (1994) — Cover artist, some editions — 140 copies, 2 reviews
Lion's Heart (1991) — Cover artist, some editions — 104 copies, 1 review
Visions of Fantasy: Tales from the Masters (1989) — Illustrator — 103 copies, 2 reviews
L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future, Volume 33 (2017) — Contributor — 98 copies, 38 reviews
Lion's Soul (1991) — Cover artist, some editions — 91 copies, 1 review
Dungeons & Dragons Set 1: Basic Rules (1983) — Illustrator — 87 copies, 1 review
Dungeons & Dragons Basic Players Manual (1978) — Illustrator — 79 copies
The LANTERN OF GOD (1989) — Cover artist, some editions — 77 copies, 3 reviews
The Day the Magic Stopped (1995) — Cover artist — 69 copies
L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future, Volume XXIX (2013) — Contributor — 61 copies, 14 reviews
Dungeons & Dragons: Dungeon Masters Companion: Book Two (1984) — Illustrator — 43 copies
Dungeons & Dragons Expert Rulebook (1983) — Illustrator — 43 copies
The Art Of Dragon Magazine (2007) — Artist — 40 copies, 1 review
Secret Sorceress (1983) — Cover artist, some editions — 39 copies, 1 review
Ring of the Ruby Dragon (1983) — Cover artist, some editions — 37 copies, 2 reviews
Isle of Illusion (1983) — Cover artist, some editions — 30 copies
Talisman of Valdegarde (1983) — Cover artist, some editions — 30 copies
Dungeons and Dragons, Players Companion: Book One (1984) — Illustrator — 26 copies
Lords of Doom (1986) — Cover artist, some editions — 25 copies
Battle Road (Car Wars Adventure Gamebook #1) (1986) — Cover artist, some editions — 20 copies
Dragon Magazine, No. 140 (1988) — Cover artist, some editions — 17 copies
Encyclopaedia Arcane: Crossbreeding - Flesh and Blood (2003) — Cover artist, some editions — 16 copies
The Planes: Feuerring - Gateway To Hell (2002) — Cover artist, some editions — 15 copies
Fuel's Gold (Car Wars Adventure Game Book) (1986) — Cover artist, some editions — 11 copies
The Folio: The Storyteller's Arcana (2013) — Cover artist, some editions — 3 copies


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Common Knowledge



Read these when they first came out. Still amusing.
Jon_Hansen | 1 other review | Aug 13, 2019 |
Elmore drew and wrote a cartoon series for Dragon Magazine from 1983-1989, and later for Games Unplugged. This is not a collection of strips, but the rules for running adventures in the world of Snarf. Designed under the Open Game License. There are some handy tips for bringing some silly/light-hearted events into any fantasy adventure game.
BruceCoulson | Apr 9, 2016 |
What would you get if you lifted Tolkien's cosmology wholesale and made a few adjustments to the outcome (like eliminating the One Ring)? Well, possibly something like this. There's nothing particularly wrong with the system, but there are actual licensed Tolkien games which are better and avoid blatant copyright infringment.
BruceCoulson | Jul 16, 2014 |
From 1983 to 1989, Larry Elmore wrote a comic strip of Dragon magazine called SnarfQuest, the tale of Snarf, a hapless zeetvah who sets out to finds riches and glory in the name of laziness. Eventually, the demands of producing a completed strip every month, when coupled with his other professional obligations to paint book covers and other artwork, became too much for Elmore to keep up with, and so he stopped drawing and writing the strip in the middle of an ongoing story line. In 2002, Elmore compiled all the existing strips together, and produced The SnarfQuest Graphic Novel, giving fans of the original comic strip the opportunity to read all of Snarf's adventures yet again.

Aside from a very brief one-page introduction by Elmore giving a little bit of background about the original run of the strip, the contents of the book more or less just reprint the original strips, complete with teaser boxes at the end of each "issue". The strips are presented in the same black and white format as they were in the original run, and contain no new panels or other content. If you have a sufficiently large pile of old Dragon magazines that you have the original print run of the strip and you are happy reading them in that format, then this volume is probably not for you. If, on the other hand, you missed an issue or two, or you never read the original run, or you just like having all of your SnarfQuest in one handy book, then this is a great compilation to have on your bookshelf.

The story itself is just as funny as ever. Snarf is a zeetvah, a snout-nosed creature with huge bat wing-like ears. At the opening of the book, Snarf's tribe's leader has died, and per their traditions, the zeetvahs will select as their new leader the zeetvah who manages to collect the most treasure and performs the most heroic deeds in the following year. Snarf reasons that if he just works hard for one year and becomes king he will be able to kick back and cruise for the rest of his life. With this in mind, our hero sets out to make himself a fortune in the outside world, resulting in a collection of absurd but always hilarious adventures as the fundamentally inept, cowardly, and somewhat dim-witted Snarf heads straight for any situation that promises riches and easily or safely obtained glory, or at least a reasonable facsimile thereof.

Though his efforts begin with an inauspicious start - Snarf steals a gemstone from a seemingly friendly passer by by convincing him that Snarf is a crazed killer - he quickly gets into more trouble than he bargained for when he attempts to infiltrate the evil wizard Suthaze's tower. Snarf seems to routinely bite off more than he can chew as his greed and tendency to exaggerate his own prowess lead him to get in over his head, at which point Snarf usually tries to run, fast-talk himself out of the situation, or, if worst comes to worst, actually act heroic. His adventures lead him to tangle not only with Suthaze, but also a dragon that thinks he's a duck (and later doesn't think he's a duck), a giant, and another evil wizard named Gathgor. Along the way Snarf also has to deal with a journey to the perpetual pit, a smitten princess and her prejudiced father, and a condition that makes him believe he is a bee.

As fun as the conflicts are, what makes the story interesting is the bizarre cast of characters that Snarf befriends in his journey, from a human prince transformed into a rat, to a beautiful woodland sorceress, to a dopey mercenary named Dorf, to the displaced robot that Snarf thinks is a weird wizardly knight with odd rituals and who he calls Aveeare because he can't pronounce the robot's real name VR-X9 4 M2 Galactic Probe Government Issue Robot. And there is also the insanely dangerous beast of burden that Snarf purchases named the gagglezoomer and its accompanying control mechanism that turns out to be a death leech. And finally, the beautiful and startlingly immodest Teleri, who Snarf falls in love with (which isn't much of a surprise, as Snarf falls for any pretty girl that he happens across), but who also seems to eventually fall for Snarf. All of these companions are allies after a fashion, and provide Snarf with help in his quest, but more importantly they also provide the story with a lot of humorous misadventures and misunderstandings.

A little more than halfway through the book the original story ends, which probably would have been a good place to end the strip. However, it was wildly popular among readers of Dragon magazine, and Elmore decided to continue Snarf's adventures. First Elmore wrote a short ten page interlude that featured Snarf and Teleri seeking adventure five years after the events of the first part of the book and getting sucked in to the travails of a small village that is plagued by a werewolf. A plan involving forming a rock band goes awry, and a follow-up plan involving making silver bullets for Snarf's pistol also fails, and in the end Teleri saves the day, as usual. The story is funny and silly, which is exactly what one expects from a Snarf story.

After this short side story, Elmore settles in for another long epic, as the pressures of being king get to Snarf and he decides to pass the reins of leadership on to another and join his friends on an adventure to the stars in the rescue ship sent for Aveeare. This second extended adventure transforms the setting from a fairly standard (albeit somewhat zany) fantasy world to a fairly standard (albeit, yet again somewhat zany) science fiction world. Unfortunately, this story line is not nearly as interesting or enjoyable as the first, feeling like something that was simply tacked on out of a sense of obligation. There is some decent development with respect to the relationship between Snarf and Teleri, and there are plenty of silly hi jinks involving bar fights, a hunt for gold, some native creatures who want to eat Snarf's pickup truck, and a race that features the gagglezoomer.

By 1989, the pressure of producing a monthly strip had burned out Elmore, and he decided to cut the story short. As soon as the characters made their way back to Snarf's home village, he inserted himself into the comic and explained that he was cancelling the strip. And just that abruptly, the run of SnarfQuest in Dragon magazine came to an end, and so does this volume. Even though the heroes return to find that a revitalized Suthaze is threatening to conquer the world while assisted by the magically enhanced death leech, that plot is simply left unresolved, and Snarf's adventures were put on hold. Elmore later picked up the series and printed new installments first in Games Unplugged, and then on his own website, and then in Knights of the Dinner Table. But none of these continuation strips are contained in this book, and as a result, the reader is left hanging in the same way fans of the original strip were.

With the exception of the rather unsatisfying inconclusive conclusion, The SnarfQuest Graphic Novel is a fun compilation. There is, after all, a reason that it was one of the most popular regular features that appeared in Dragon during the magazine's heyday. Snarf is, for all his faults, a fundamentally likable character and he, along with his supporting cast of misfits, provide plenty of humorous and entertaining adventure from the story's opening pages right up to the abrupt end.

This review has also been posted on my blog Dreaming About Other Worlds.
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StormRaven | 1 other review | Aug 2, 2013 |

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