Friday, January 03, 2020

Five top fantasy multiverses

A. K. Larkwood studied English at St John’s College, Cambridge. Since then, she has worked in higher education & media relations, and is now studying law. She lives in Oxford, England, with her wife and a cat. Her debut novel, The Unspoken Name, will be published by Tor in February 2020.

At Larkwood tagged five favorite fantasy multiverses, including:
The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E Harrow

The Ten Thousand Doors of January is generous in doling out all the pleasures of portal fantasy—a gorgeously rendered travelogue through a whole panoply of countries both real and imagined, full of extraordinary landscapes and artefacts, given life by Harrow’s crisp, evocative prose—but it also engages directly with the uneasy aspects of portal fantasy, interrogating the colonial implications of people from the “real world” going to sort out the problems of other places.

In this and other ways this is a novel about the latent horror of the fantasy multiverse setting. If there are ways to other worlds, those ways can be blocked and broken. The heart of the novel is the trauma of separation and isolation, which shapes every character in very different ways as they struggle to find their way back to one another, both literally and emotionally.
Read about another entry on the list.

The Page 69 Test: The Ten Thousand Doors of January.

--Marshal Zeringue