bluebeard. mr fox. and harald silkenhair.

an anti-wednesay post

West of the MoonA Word from Mr Pond: I’m delighted to welcome my friend and colleague Katherine Langrish to Paradoxes. Katherine, as you may already know, has been journeying across the blogsphere a virtual book tour for her new epic fantasy, West of the Moon (HarperCollins, 2011).

I’m half way through my copy, and I love it. Just enough scary, just enough thrill, just enough balance of darkness and hope. A cracking good tale. Look for a review here in the near future. And you have a chance to win a free copy: concurrent to this post, I’m running a giveaway over at The Hog’s Head, and there’s plenty of time to join the fun.

Katherine’s visiting us for anti-wednesday, and is discussing some of the anti-tale elements of her work—notably the anti-heroic anti-hero who appears as a particularly unpleasant antagonist.

Bluebeard. Mr Fox. And Harald Silkenhair.
by Katherine Langrish

First of all – and I feel quite cheerful about saying this – trying to define the anti-tale is pretty much like trying to catch your own shadow. You’ll have fun, but you won’t succeed. (Or if by some nursery fireside magic you do, don’t try and stick it to yourself with anything as slippery as soap; get a little girl to sew it to you with teeny tiny stitches and a sharp steel needle.)

Of course the ‘anti-tale’ can be a useful term: ‘subverting, satirizing or re-imagining the traditional tale’; but what that means depends on what we all think ‘traditional’ includes. And excludes. It’s best to look at the whole thing out of the corner of your eye while pretending to be absorbed in something else.

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