Fantasy gaming pioneer Joe Dever’s epic gamebook series Lone Wolf is back in paperback for the first time in over 30 years – with new books to come.
Originally published to huge acclaim and popularity in 1984, with over 12 million copies sold, Joe Dever’s classic gamebook series have been fan favourites ever since – but not widely available.
Sadly, Joe passed away from cancer in 2016, but it was his final wish that his son, Ben, complete the remaining unfinished books in the series and bring all of the books back into print for a new audience.
The first five books in the original Lone Wolf series – “The Kai Series” – are now available in paperback editions featuring bold new covers while retaining the classic interior illustrations by fantasy artist Gary Chalk. Books six and seven in the 32-book series will be published in May, with the entire series continuing to be published throughout 2023 and 2024.
The Lone Wolf series has always been loved by fantasy and gaming fans who played them when they were first published in the 1980s, but now they are now finding a new audience, including the children of the original readers as well as those who have discovered them through the recent revival in popularity of fantasy role playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons.
Definitive editions including additional background material and expansions contributed by the Lone Wolf fan community.
Welcome to Magnamund!
Before computer games there were gamebooks – interactive novels, where the reader takes on the role of the hero and is given choices that affect the outcome of the adventure. Each book can be played many times and new paths can be discovered.
First published in 1984, all of the Lone Wolf gamebooks, which took the whole world by storm, with many editions in many languages, take place in the same fantasy world, Magnamund, and each book provides a piece to an overall epic saga.
In the 1990s, with the rise of computer gaming, the gamebook craze was over. Joe Dever never had a chance to complete his series. Fans were unable to finish the adventure. Then came the internet and the Lone Wolf community gathered online. An explosion of new activity led to Lone Wolf roleplaying and video games – and Joe Dever got back to work.
In 2016, the first new Lone Wolf adventure for 30 years was published by Holmgard Press. Unfortunately, it was during that time that news came of Joe Dever’s battle with cancer, succumbing to the pernicious disease in November the same year. He handed his notes for the final three books to his son, Ben Devere, along with the task of concluding the series and bringing the entire series back into print for a new audience.
Ben and co-author Vincent Lazzari are now working on the final book, The Light of the Kai, in time for the 40th anniversary of the series in 2024.
The Lone Wolf series is published by Holmgard Press. The first five books in the series, Flight from the Dark, Fire on the Water, The Caverns of Kalte, The Chasm of Doom and Shadow on the Sand are available now in paperback in all good bookshops and online booksellers. These comprise “The Kai Series”, and chart Lone Wolf’s efforts to thwart the invasion of his homeland and bring Vonotar, the traitor responsible for the death of the Kai Order, to justice.
Joe Dever was the first British winner of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons championship of America in 1982. He first created the fictional world of Magnamund in 1977 as a setting for his Dungeons & Dragons campaigns. In 1984, he released the first book of the Lone Wolf series of gamebooks, which went on to sell over 12 million copies worldwide.
Ben Devere, Joe’s son, grew up thinking that it was cool that his father was a writer with legions of fans, but he never had any personal interest in the Lone Wolf books, or fantasy gaming. That changed when his father, dying of cancer, asked him to complete the final books in the Lone Wolf series. Reluctantly at first, but with growing enthusiasm, Ben eventually left his work as a music event director to immerse himself in the world of Lone Wolf and its community of fans.
• The first five Lone Wolf books in the series, Flight from the Dark, Fire on the Water, The Caverns of Kalte, The Chasm of Doom and Shadow on the Sand are available now in paperback in all good bookshops and online booksellers and direct from Magnamund
Before his death, Joe Dever most generously offered to allow some of his books to be published on the internet thereafter to be downloaded free-of-charge. Rob Adams, Paul Bonner, Gary Chalk, Melvyn Grant, Richard Hook, Peter Andrew Jones, Cyril Julien, Peter Lyon, Peter Parr, Graham Round, and Brian Williams have also generously offered similar permission for their contributions to the world of Magnamund. Project Aon is a volunteer group of fans dedicated to publishing these works.
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.