Annal: 2002 World Fantasy Award for Novel

Results of the World Fantasy Award in the year 2002.

Book:The Other Wind

The Other Wind: Book 6 of The Earthsea Cycle

Ursula K. Le Guin

The sorcerer Alder fears sleep. He dreams of the land of death, of his wife who died young and longs to return to him so much that she kissed him across the low stone wall that separates our world from the Dry Land-where the grass is withered, the stars never move, and lovers pass without knowing each other. The dead are pulling Alder to them at night. Through him they may free themselves and invade Earthsea.

Alder seeks advice from Ged, once Archmage. Ged tells him to go to Tenar, Tehanu, and the young king at Havnor. They are joined by amber-eyed Irian, a fierce dragon able to assume the shape of a woman.

The threat can be confronted only in the Immanent Grove on Roke, the holiest place in the world and there the king, hero, sage, wizard, and dragon make a last stand.

Book:American Gods

American Gods

Neil Gaiman

A master of inventive fiction, Neil Gaiman delves into the murky depths where reality and imagination meet. Now in American Gods, he works his literary magic to extraordinary results.

Shadow dreamed of nothing but leaving prison and starting a new life. But the day before his release, his wife and best friend are killed in an accident. On the plane home to the funeral, he meets Mr. Wednesday—a beguiling stranger who seems to know everything about him. A trickster and rogue, Mr. Wednesday offers Shadow a job as his bodyguard. With nowhere left to go, Shadow accepts, and soon learns that his role in Mr. Wednesday’s schemes will be far more dangerous and dark than he could have ever imagined. For beneath the placid surface of everyday life a war is being fought—and the prize is the very soul of America.

Book:Brown Harvest

Brown Harvest

Jay Russell

What happens when the Boy Detective grows up, moves away, and comes home for a visit? His hometown has turned from American-as-apple-pie to darkest noir, his once-innocent girlfriend has transformed into something both more and less than she was, and his father has become a bum. Both parody and tribute to childhood heroes, Brown Harvest appropriates characters familiar to anyone who grew up reading detective stories. Borrowing from the Hardy Boys to Jay Cantor (Krazy Kat) and setting the characters on a collision path with hard-boiled thrillers, young adult mysteries, and classic noir fiction, Jay Russell creates joyful mayhem.

Book:The Curse of Chalion

The Curse of Chalion

Lois McMaster Bujold

On the eve of the Daughter’s Day—the grand celebration that will honor the Lady of Spring, one of the five reigning deities—a man broken in body and spirit makes his way slowly down the road to Valenda. A former courtier and soldier, Cazaril has survived indignity and horrific torture as a slave aboard an enemy galley. Now he seeks nothing more than a menial job in the kitchens of the Dowager Provincara, in the noble household where he served as page in his youth.

But the gods have greater plans for this humbled man. Welcomed warmly, clothed and fed, he is named, to his great surprise, secretary tutor to the Royesse Iselle—the beautiful, strong-willed sister of the impetuous boy who is destined to be the next ruler of the land. But the assignment must ultimately carry Cazaril to the one place he fears even more than the sea: to the royal court of Cardegoss, rife with intrigues and lethal treacheries. …[more]

Book:From the Dust Returned

From the Dust Returned: A Novel

Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury, America’s most beloved storyteller, has spent a lifetime carrying readers to exhilarating and dangerous places, from dark street comers in unfamiliar cities and towns to the edge of the universe. Now, in an extraordinary flight of the imagination a half-century in the making, he takes us to a most wondrous destination: into the heart of an Eternal Family

They have lived for centuries in a house of legend and mystery in upper Illinois—and they are not like other midwesterners. Rarely encountered in daylight hours, their children are curious and wild; their old ones have survived since before the Sphinx first sank its paws deep in Egyptian sands. And some sleep in beds with lids.

Now the house is being readied in anticipation of the gala homecoming that will gather together the farflung branches of this odd and remarkable family. In the past-midnight stillness can be detected the soft fluttering of Uncle Einars wings. From…[more]

Book:The Onion Girl

The Onion Girl

Charles de Lint

In novel after novel, and story after story, Charles de Lint has brought an entire imaginary North American city to vivid life. Newford: where magic lights dark streets; where myths walk clothed in modern shapes; where a broad cast of extraordinary and affecting people work to keep the whole world turning.

At the center of all the entwined lives in Newford stands a young artist named Jilly Coppercorn, with her tangled hair, her paint-splattered jeans, a smile perpetually on her lips—Jilly, whose paintings capture the hidden beings that dwell in the city’s shadows. Now, at last, de Lint tells Jilly’s own story…for behind the painter’s fey charm lies a dark secret and a past she’s labored to forget. And that past is coming to claim her now.

“I’m the onion girl,” Jilly Coppercorn says. “Pull back the layers of my life, and you won’t find anything at the core. Just a broken child. A hollow girl.” She’s very, very good at running. But life has just forced Jilly to stop.

Book:The Wooden Sea

The Wooden Sea

Jonathan Carroll

Set in the fictional town of Crane’s View, New York, the familiar setting of earlier Carroll novels, The Wooden Sea also brings back the character of Police Chief Frannie McCabe. Crane’s View is a small, comfortable town nestled along the river, a place where nothing out of the ordinary would happen—and doesn’t, to the casual observer. But when a three-legged dog named Old Vertue wanders into McCabe’s office and dies, he knows that something odd is beginning, and that his life will be forever altered.

As with all Carroll novels, The Wooden Sea is filled with memorable characters who are so familiar that you can’t help but be drawn into their world, a world that is always just a little off from the norm. Fans of his work will be delighted by the small details and recurring themes throughout the story, while newcomers will have the chance to discover all these little eccentricities for the first time. The Wooden Sea should not be missed.

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