From the back of the book:
For aeons, folk have struggled to master the world of Toril through
the use of magic. The human race has stolen what magical knowledge it
can from the elves and other races, gained more through worship, and
created the rest by building on the work of those who have gone before.
For centuries human wizards have experimented with new spells and
variations on existing magic, striving to grow ever more powerful. They
have succeeded to an astonishing degree, but through the death of
secretive mages and the destruction of realms and entire peoples, much
of the lore they built has been lost, hidden, or distorted. To pierce
this heavy cloak of missing knowledge, cryptic sorcerous codes, and
misinformation requires a writer of rare daring, persistence, and
magical skill. Such a man is Volothamp Geddarm, famous traveler of the
Realms - and this is the most important, long-suppressed work, the book
that archwizards could not keep from your hands!
Read this 128-page tome, and learn:
> How mages gain special powers for themselves - including the awesome ability known as spellfire.
> How items may be enchanted to fire forth magic once, twice, or whenever called upon.
> The best materials from which to construct magic items.
> Powerful spells spells that have hitherto been the secrets of the most puissant archmages.
> Details of the many fell, awesome artifacts of the Realms known to exist.
> Lore about teleportation, magical wards, guardian spells, and site of power.
> Much, much more that most wizards would have liked to remain hidden
from the eyes of their rivals - and common folk not skilled in magic -
Suitable for all levels of play.
Special note: This edition of Volo's Guide to All Things Magical,
intended for travelers from beyond the borders of Faerun, have been
heavily rewritten and contains game notes and commentary by the famous
sage and archmage Elminster of Shadowdale.