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Fantasy and science fiction | Class #4, 2016

This week’s topic is “Beyond the World We Know” — a category that encompasses an extensive range of books, from magical realism to science fiction to the far away places of imaginary worlds. Jane Langton’s classic piece on fantasy from the 1973 Horn Book, “The Weak Place in the Cloth” provides an apt and lovely […]

Feed | Class #4, 2016

At first perusal, M.T. Anderson’s Feed is an entertaining tale of privileged futuristic teens who spend spring break on the moon. Their carelessness about the environment, their pitiful lack of knowledge, and technology-induced overstimulation seems so exaggerated as to invite easy laughter. Not far into the book, however, we start to recognize every aspect of […]

Far Far Away | Class #4, 2016

Folk and fairy tales have long been fodder for writers, who re-tell, borrow, fracture, and invert the original stories in their own. I would suggest that Tom McNeal bends the relationship between fairy tale and novel in a new way in his suspenseful tale Far Far Away. What do others think about blending of new […]

Hot Dog, Katsa!

The author of fantasy has fewer limitations than the author of realism. Anything is fair, right? Armoured bears and tiny spies who ride dragonflies. Surgical enhancements that give a person Special superhuman powers for running, climbing, and flying. A reality-show arena as big as a city, with genetically modified animal-monsters to prey on the contestants. […]