This volume details a study of the giant spiders found in Amalur, written in traditional gnomish scientific style.
Volume VIII - Giant Spiders
How curious that there can be in this world a spider no bigger than the head of a pin, and one as large as an aurochs? The giant spider is a well-known creature in the lands of Amalur, and rightfully so -- fast and graceful on eight legs, fangs full of poison, capable of shooting inescapable webs -- for the spider is one of the deadliest predators one can regularly expect to encounter.
It is rather embarrassing, but for as many opportunities we have to study these creatures, we still have no idea why they are so large. Perhaps to avoid predation? The new, and most attractive, theory attributes their prodigious size to the recent growth of magic in Amalur. I am inclined to agree with this -- simply because the weight of its exoskeleton would crush the beast if it left to ordinary physical forces.
The giant spider is also extraordinary because it can exhibit a wide array of predatory behavior, whereas most of its smaller relatives stick to a specific pattern of hunt. They can burrow very quickly underground, in order to ambush enemies by erupting from the soil - a behavior seen previously in the tarantulas of the Bassowin territory -- as well as the typical poison-laced bite. But perhaps the most terrifying tool at there* disposal is actively shooting web silk at their foes. This is a much more developed form of hunting than simply waiting in a web for prey to come along... perhaps the increase in brain size has expanded their capacity to innovate on hunting instincts? I shall endeavor to examine this further....