other authors to compare with DWJ

Nat Case hedberg at vermontel.net
Mon Aug 30 11:52:56 EDT 1999

An eccentric list for comparison to an eccentric author:

1. Kenneth Lillington: a very very English author. Published at least one
historical (Young Man of Morning), then a whole raft of supernatural
romances (my favorite is What Beckoning Ghost?), and then some deliciously
funny fantasies (An Ash-Blonde Witch, Jonah's Mirror, and my favorite,

2. Margaret Mahy: mentioned before. While I find her "silly stories" a lot
of fun (and some have plotting intricacies to equal Jones', I've always been
partial to the emotional depth of her older readers' stories: The
Changeover, and more recently Underrunners and Dangerous Spaces. 

3. Orson Scott Card's Alvin Maker series (or at any rate, the first 2
books). I think his books again have all the depth of attention that Jones'
do, with a very American and thus overtly religious overtone. I think he's
lost a lot of his punch in recent books (Homebody was truly insufferable),
but books like Folk of the Fringe, Seventh Son, and the original Ender's
Game are breathtaking.

4. Penelope Farmer's Charlotte Sometimes and Summer Birds are real gems.
Like Astrid Lindgren's Brothers Lionheart, I as moved by my memory of
reading them fresh at ages 8-11 as I am by their quality as books now. 

5. Jane Yolen. I like Jane, and her essays (see Touch Magic) are compelling.
I find her fiction really good on the first read, not so great on the
second, with only a few exceptions. I love the recent Merlin trilogy, I love
Briar Rose, and I love The Wild Hunt. I just got Armageddon Summer
co-written with Bruce Coville and am liking what I see so far.

6. Neil Gaiman. Dark, but amazing. Sandman is his best known work, but
pretty much everything he's done in graphic form is brilliant. I recommend
Mr. Punch, Signal to Noise and Violent Cases. Also his novel Neverwhere. 

7. Robert Westall, mentioned by others.

8. Robert Cormier, best known for The Chocolate War and I Am the Cheese. I
highly recommend Fade and the relatively recent Tenderness. A really truly
scary author. 

9. Not magical as such at all, but I find their writing insightful in the
same sort of way: Bruce Brooks, especially Midnight Hour Encores and What
Hearts, and Tim Wynne-Jones (no relation), especially the short story
collections Some of the Kinder Planets and Book of Changes

10 Phillippa Pearce; not just Tom's Midnight Garden, but her short-story
collections, which are marvelous.

All for now; maybe more later.

Nat Case
Hedberg Maps, Inc.
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