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The Cambridge Companion to Fantasy Literature [Paperback]

Edward James , Farah Mendlesohn

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Book Description

Feb. 27 2012 0521728738 978-0521728737
Fantasy is a creation of the Enlightenment and the recognition that excitement and wonder can be found in imagining impossible things. From the ghost stories of the Gothic to the zombies and vampires of twenty-first-century popular literature, from Mrs Radcliffe to Ms Rowling, the fantastic has been popular with readers. Since Tolkien and his many imitators, however, it has become a major publishing phenomenon. In this volume, critics and authors of fantasy look at the history of fantasy since the Enlightenment, introduce readers to some of the different codes for the reading and understanding of fantasy and examine some of the many varieties and subgenres of fantasy; from magical realism at the more literary end of the genre, to paranormal romance at the more popular end. The book is edited by the same pair who edited The Cambridge Companion to Science Fiction (winner of a Hugo Award in 2005).

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'Given that genre is really a construction of critics, librarians and booksellers, designed to place books in a way that they can be more easily found by consumers, and that fantasy literature is less easy to define than, say, crime fiction, this companion has a large field to cover and does an admirable job of presenting a good overview of the many authors who fit into this [particular] niche.' Stuart Bentley, Reference Reviews

Book Description

Since Tolkien, Pratchett, Rowling, Pullman and Meyer, fantasy literature has become one of the most popular genres in the English-speaking world. This book puts this publishing phenomenon in a historical context, suggests different ways of reading and appreciating this literature, and examines some of its varieties and subgenres.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Study Resource! Oct. 12 2013
By LitNerd12 - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Bought this book for a course on speculative fiction. Having very little prior knowledge on the genre, I found this book an excellent study resource for the fantasy aspect. The critical articles are all manageable (averaging about 10 pages each) so they are easy to digest and understand. I definitely recommend the book for students new to the critical study of fantasy.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Highly informative Nov. 9 2013
By Robert J Weber Jr - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Good articles an fantasy genre and history. Very thorough! Excellent resource for student research, and good source for reading within the genre beyond LoTR and Song of Ice and Fire. Recommended.
4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OMG Jan. 8 2013
By Jacquelyn Hansen - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
So great to have some scholarly articles on fantasy! Yes, yes, yes!! I took a fantasy Lit class last semester, and this was a required text. So helpful

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