Category: Science-Fiction

Tundra Horror

I see writing for kids as one of the most difficult creative tasks to do well. How to judge what might appeal to a younger audience? How to make the tone convincing yet not condescending? The difficulties seem multiplied when you add horror to the mix. It intensifies […]

Smooth Meets Convoluted

When I talk about a book, I often feel like I’m comparing it to some ideal (and non-existent) book, with features that get checked off on my list. Like a formula, or like a conformist’s view of art. But should every book resemble every other book? The answer […]

Retold

Familiar tales, like Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid or The Snow Queen, have been reused and retold countless times. Sometimes the result is a mindless rip-off, and sometimes the familiarity of the structure lets a writer riff on the story in creative and surprising ways. It’s a […]

His Dark Ending

I call it a bait and switch. The first book in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, The Golden Compass, was an adventure fantasy that was fast-paced and written in an incredibly smooth style. Intrigue, danger, children in peril, armoured polar bears, witch clans at war with each […]