Is “hard fantasy” a thing? Because I love it when there is at least the attempt to ground fantastic beasts, magic, and so forth in known science.
Maddie Stone has enlisted the help of some biology experts to uncover the science behind some of the creatures found in Game of Thrones. She looks at dragons, direwolves, manticores, lizard lions, krakens, and white walkers.
A while back I noted some prehistoric beasts that would make excellent stand-ins for some of the more notable monsters of mythology. One of those, the naked bear (aka the stiff-legged bear) even made its way onto the cover of The Devil’s Due.