Of Sex and Faerie: Further Essays on Genre Fiction

Author: Lennard, John


Recommend to your librarian

A companion volume to the same author's Of Modern Dragons.
In three formats: PDF, ePub, Mobi

Taking up where the author's book Of Modern Dragons (2007) left off, these essays continue Lennard's investigation of the praxis of serial reading and the best genre fiction of recent decades, including work by Bill James, Walter Mosley, Lois Mcmaster Bujold, and Ursula K. Le Guin. There are groundbreaking studies of contemporary paranormal romance, and of Hornblower's transition to space, while the final essay deals with the phenomenon and explosive growth of fanfiction, and with the increasingly empowered status of the reader in a digital world.


1. Of Policemen and Poussin: Bill James’s Dance to the Muzak of Crime
2. Of Mean Streets and Mortgaged Castles: Walter Mosley, Easy Rawlins, and the G. I. Bill
3. Of Marriage and Mutations: Lois McMaster Bujold and the Several Lives of Lord Miles Naismith Vorkosigan
4. Of Sex and Faerie: Meredith Gentry’s Improbable Code of Orgasm and other Paranormal Romance
5. Of Voyages and Volumes: The Many Successors of C. S. Forester and Horatio Hornblower
6. Of the Western Shore: Ursula K. Le Guin’s Late Distillation of Fable
7. Of Criticism and Continuities: A Personal Account of Serial Reading in the Age of the Web

There is an extensive bibliography of genre and critical work, with eight illustrations and many hyperlinks.


About the author

John Lennard is an independent scholar and editor of Fairleigh Dickinson University's online journal Exploring Globalization. He was from 2004-09 Professor of British & American Literature at the University of the West Indies--Mona, and has taught in Cambridge and London. His books include But I Digress (Clarendon Press, 1991), The Poetry Handbook (OUP 1996, 2005), and The Case of Ronald Merrick (HEB, forthcoming), as well as the precursor to this volume, Of Modern Dragons and other essays on Genre Fiction (HEB, 2007). He has also written on Shakespeare, Nabokov, Paul Scott, Reginald Hill, Walter Mosley, Ian McDonald, Octavia E. Butler, and Tamora Pierce for Humanities Ebooks.

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Of Sex and Faerie: Further Essays on Genre Fiction

Review Comment

I'm halfway through dipping into the long essays in this collection, and it's got under my skin. You need to read this if you're a fan of any of the authors Lennard is writing about, and I'm finding it worth reading even on authors I don't know. For starters, Lennard is intimately familiar with a huge range of genre fiction. It's the sort of close familiarity which skates close to obsession - except that the range of his reference, and the fierce precision of his critical intelligence, mean that he continually makes points which ramify way beyond the detail of the fiction he puts under the microscope. --01Factory (on Amazon.com)

People were talking about this book on the various venues where my favorite series of novels, the Miles Vorkosigan books by Lois McMaster Bujold, are discussed, so, being a former English major, I decided to see what all the fuss was about. Of Sex and Faerie is well worth picking up for a fan of any of the authors discussed if the Bujold essay is any example. The interested reader may even pick up on another author or two to dip into and enjoy.
--M. M. Justus (on Amazon.com)

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