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Great Science-Fiction & Fantasy Works
Science-fiction & fantasy literature: a critical list with discussions.
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A. S. Byatt
This is a brief discussion of A. S. Byatt and, of course, of some speculative-fiction books by Byatt.
This discussion and list does not necessarily include every book by Byatt: it includes only those books that I both know and like. Just as with the author list itself, omission of a particular item may mean I didn’t think highly enough of the omitted item, or it may simply mean that I have not yet sufficient familiarity with it. (In a very few cases, I have listed some books merely on the strength of my opinion of the author: all such books are clearly marked below, as throughout these lists, with a hash mark (#) before the title so you know what’s what.)
I don’t pretend that this discussion is a deep analysis. My intent is no more than to give you a rough idea of what kinds of tales Byatt tells, how those tales are usually told, and what makes them and Byatt worthy; in sum, to help you rank A. S. Byatt (and the works by Byatt listed here) on your personal literary “to do” list.
This page has not been updated in a long while; consequently, external links (if any) may lead to dead or moribund pages. I am now cleaning up these pages as fast as I can, but I am one man and it may take me a while to get to every page needing link checking (or even the “Other Resources” section added). Sorry. Please be patient.
A Few Words About A. S. Byatt
Regrettably, I have not yet had an opportunity to write an essay on this author, but the "Other Resources" section below will lead you to some information about the "Notable Books" listed
farther down this page.
Return to the page top. ↑
Other A. S. Byatt Resources
A. S. Byatt Resources on the Web
Like many contemporary authors, Byatt has her own web site, A. S. Byatt. There is, of course, quite
a bit more available, though; for those wanting to read things by Byatt (she is a considerable essayist and reviewer) J. B. Hur's remarkable A S Byatt Resources on the Web site (apparently part of Google's developing "Google Sites"
program) does the whole job--and it includes Byatt interviews, as well.
Of other pages about Byatt, a couple (there are many) of the more notable include A.S. Byatt at The Complete Review, and A.
S. Byatt at Contemporary Writers. The MetaCritic site has a nice collection of numerous summaries of (and links to the full) reviews of Byatt's Little Black Book of Stories;
they are indicative of the critical reception she has received. Also, The New York Times has a list of the many reviews of Byatt works and articles about her that it has carried.
As a sidebar, Byatt caused a minor tempest with an essay in The New York Times titled, in a self-explanatory way, Harry Potter and the Childish Adult; it caused
the predictable hissy fits among the childish soi disant adults caught with, so to speak, their book covers down, as with this folly in Salon, which rails against Byatt without
ever speaking to any of the several points she so clearly set forth.
A. S. Byatt Resources in Print
There is a frighteningly thorough bibliography of material both by and--what we want
here--about Byatt on her site (compiled by Alexa Alfer and Michael D. Crane with contributions from others); it is all anyone needs.
Notable Science-Fiction and Fantasy Books by A. S. Byatt **
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