Even though I love the Zamonien books as much as anybody, this … was not it. This book is an encyclopaedia for the fictional continent Zamonien, as a tie-in for all the other books by Walter Moers. And I understand everybody who loved it, in a nostalgic way, thinking back to when they first read the Zamonion books. But damn, this feels so limited, like a big missed chance.
The book is a mix of small illustrations, book quotes and summaries of book events/people/places. There is very little (if any?) new material. It’s just a refresher, without substance of its own. Compare it to a very similar book about Harry Potter, which was an important part of my childhood: It provided plenty of information that wasn’t to be found in the books, both real history (mostly about ancient and medieval superstitions) and in-universe characters (probably drawn from author interviews). Additionally, it strictly kept to the tone of a serious encyclopaedia, which was both fun and impressive. This book neither provides lots of new material nor embraces the style – even though it would’ve been so tempting to refer to the in-universe encyclopaedia! Sad to see another middling book reaping the profits of the earlier brilliant work.