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BSFA Review: Historical Dictionary of Fantasy Literature edited by Allen Stroud

12/04/2024 15:56 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Historical Dictionary of Fantasy Literature cover

Historical Dictionary of Fantasy Literature (Second Edition) edited by Allen Stroud

(Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2023)

Reviewed by Kevan Manwaring

Impressively ambitious in scope, Allen Stroud’s monumental work now appears in a second edition, but with the inclusion of very contemporary updates ‘Historical Dictionary’ seems even more of a redundant title. All dictionaries are historical records from the moment of publication, however up-to-date the entries: the most recent ‘buzzword’ becomes a cultural curio within a few years. That said, a desire to be topical can result in a lack of perspective and depth: some of the most recent additions are rather embryonic and seem little more than placeholders (e.g., World Fantasy Award-winner, R.J. Barker, gets a rather sparse three lines; the significant, complex, and contested category of the ‘Anthropocene’ barely eleven lines—perhaps these will be fleshed out in a third edition?).

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Review from BSFA Review 22 - Download your copy here.


19 Beech Green




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