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Great Science-Fiction & Fantasy Works

Science-fiction & fantasy literature: a critical list with discussions.

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You are here:  Home  »  Authors  »  Individual  »  Mary Gentle ( = this page)

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Mary Gentle

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Standard Disclaimer:

This is a brief discussion of Mary Gentle and, of course, of some speculative-fiction books by Gentle.

This discussion and list does not necessarily include every book by Gentle: 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 Gentle tells, how those tales are usually told, and what makes them and Gentle worthy; in sum, to help you rank Mary Gentle (and the works by Gentle listed here) on your personal literary “to do” list.

Secondary Disclaimer:
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 Mary Gentle

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.

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Other Mary Gentle Resources

Ms. Gentle's nascent web site (never anything but an "Under Construction" page) now seems totally gone, as is the fan site "The Wild Machines"; for such a known author, with a not-inconsiderable output, the paucity is remarkable. Normally, I prefer to link to resources that give general critical appraisals of an author's work, but when those are lacking, one must perforce turn to reviews of individual works and even to interviews; I do so.

Even interviews are scarce. All I can find is an undated one with Nick Gevers at Infinity plus and a 2000 one with Rodger Turner at The SF Site.

Of reviews (note that most of these are immensely spoiler-rich), a sampling of the more useful includes the "White Crow" tales reviewed by David Soyka at The SF Site; Ash reviewed by John Clute at; Ilario: The Lion's Eye reviewed by Nic Clarke at Strange Horizons; Grunts at Sandstorm Reviews; Cartomancy, reviewed by David Soyka at The SF Site; and 1610 reviewed by John Clute at

There are many more Gentle-related pages, of variable utility: most of the "reviews" are of the plot rehash plus "Gee, I liked it a lot" sort. But Google Is Your Friend.

Notable Science-Fiction and Fantasy Books by Mary Gentle ***

(For more possible titles by this author, see the “Unrated Books by Rated Authors” page.)

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This page was last modified on Tuesday, 13 October 2020, at 5:42 pm Pacific Time.