Publisher Insight Editions in collaboration with Blizzard Entertainment explore the history and lore of the Diablo series in even greater depth with its release of Diablo III: Book of Tyrael, which is a companion book to previously-reviewed Diablo III: Book of Cain. While the previous book focused more on a narrative approach for its written content, the Book of Tyrael is structured as a tome of knowledge. The first couple of chapters contain journal entries from Leah, Deckard Cain, and Tyrael, while the rest of the book contains the Diablo universe's complete history in chronological order as well as pages of important characters and monsters. The book contains 148 pages of content that is mixed between various writings and artworks.
The journal entries from Leah and Deckard Cain weave an interesting and absorbing tale of not only their journey through the events of Diablo III, but also their quest to discover the truth behind Leah's mother, Adria. In addition, Diablo fans finally are able to learn more about the mystical Tyrael and his tribulations after becoming a mortal to save a world in conflict between angels and demons. Tyrael's writings offer a new perspective on the Diablo world and its inhabitants that wasn't found in the previous Book of Cain. Yet, more writings from Tyrael would have been welcome as the book's primary content still focuses around Deckard Cain's research and findings. The journal entries of Leah also play a larger role this time around in which she discusses her personal journey of discovering the real Adria.
To much surprise, a rather large portion of the book is dedicated to the complete Diablo universe timeline that begins far before the series of games. Fans of the Diablo franchise wont be disappointed as a great deal of care has gone into putting together a rich history and lore behind the universe. The continual conflict between angels and demons and the mortals in-between remains an engrossing read even if at times the content can become a bit dry with the many switching characters. For fans looking to explore the universe even deeper can study up on biographies of the franchise's long list of angels, demons, and mortals. While the dedication is appreciated, the actual list of characters doesn't offer that much of a compelling reading experience. In comparison with the beginning chapters of journal entries, the latter content can quickly become monotonous to read through in its entirety.
The book's exterior and interior are similar to previously-released Book of Cain in that everything is designed with a sense of detail in mind. From the golden edge of each page to atmospheric illustrations, the Book of Tyrael provides fans with a premium Diablo reading experience. While the book doesn't contain many pages of artwork, the ones included are all stunning and live up to Blizzard's level of quality. The only issue with the book is that a majority of pages use a dark texture background against black text resulting in difficult sections to read through without a proper light source. As well, the book contains a family tree poster that features artwork on both sides of the particular characters both dead and alive.
The book's audience is specifically catered to fans of the Diablo series of games and for those not invested into the franchise will undoubtedly have difficulty truly appreciating the content. The Book of Tyrael can easily be recommended to Diablo veterans, while newcomers might want to begin with the game series. For fans of the Diablo franchise, the book is a great addition to any collection and even more so for those who previously-purchased the Book of Cain. While more narrative content would have been appreciated, the detailed account of the Diablo universe and other engrossing lore make Diablo III: Book of Tyrael a worthwhile purchase for placement upon the coffee table (or computer desk) of any longtime fan.
Diablo III: Book of Tyrael is available now from Insight Editions.
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