Get a look at the world of Thra like you’ve never seen it before.
Get a look at the world of Thra like you’ve never seen it before.
Image: All Images via Insight Editions

The world of Thra is full of incredible beings and creatures, from major civilizations like the Gelfling and the Skesis, to humble landstriders and adorable (and occasionally horrifying) Nurlocs. Now, a new book wants to detail Thra’s grand bestiary—and io9 has an exclusive look inside shows.

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Brian Froud, of course, helped bring Jim Henson’s dark fantasy world to life for both the beloved original movie and its incredible Netflix prequel series, Age of Resistance. Now, The Dark Crystal Bestiary: The Definitive Guide to the Creatures of Thrawritten by Adam Cesare and featuring over 200 illustrations from Iris Compiet—is a comprehensive look at the fauna that calls Thra home.

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The book draws on not just what was glimpsed in both the movie and the show, but years of worldbuilding in comic books and short stories that have fleshed out the world’s long history, and the ages-old tussle between the Skesis and the Mystics.

Illustration for article titled An Ancient iDark Crystal/i Mystic Comes to Life for the First Time in a New Book of Thra

While all of this lore has been tucked away in the stories before, Bestiary will give Dark Crystal fans the opportunity to see some mythical legends from Thra’s history for the very first time, after only reading glimpses and descriptions of them. Case in point, io9 can exclusively reveal the first illustration of urSen the Monk, illustrated by Compiet: the Mystic whose life essence is inextricably linked to Skeklach the Collector.

Illustration for article titled An Ancient iDark Crystal/i Mystic Comes to Life for the First Time in a New Book of Thra
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Here’s what the book has to say about the Monk, who’s only previously been mentioned in The Dark Crystal’s book and comic tie-ins about the history of the urRu:

Little is know about urSen the Monk, but that alone demonstrates the unassuming nature of his life. Shortly after the urRu exiled themselves to the Valley of the Mystics, urSen sought further seclusion, moving to a cave on the region’s outskirts. According to urSol the Chanter, it was possible that urSen had witnessed a premonition of his own death and spent the last hundred trine of his life quietly contemplating his impending fate.

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If that wasn’t enough, take a look at our exclusive slideshow from the book, including pages about the Gelflings, the Landstriders they roam the world in, Nurlocs, and more!

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The Dark Crystal Bestiary: The Definitive Guide to the Creatures of Thra is set to hit shelves on October 13, and is available to preorder now.

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Correction: 6/18/2020, 12:45 p.m. ET: A previous version of this post mistakenly stated Froud’s art was included in the book when in fact it’s all Compiet’s.


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James is a News Editor at io9. He wants pictures. Pictures of Spider-Man!

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