Why is Faery fiction such a popular fantasy subgenre, especially in Young Adult?
Thereâ€™s the demon lover aspect, a common theme in Faery fiction, especially of the
urban variety (Melissa Marrâ€™s Wicked Lovely series, Laurell K. Hamiltonâ€™s Merry
Gentry and Seanan McGuireâ€™s October Daye seriesâ€™, as well as Karen Marie
Fever books). In Elizabeth Handâ€™s MORTAL LOVE and
Tim Powersâ€™s THE
STRESS OF HER REGARD, the Irish Leannan sidhe is a lover and a vampiric muse. In
the Asian film The Haunted Bed, the spirit of a man murdered beneath a tree
carved into a newlywed coupleâ€™s bed becomes menacing and seductive, like the Irish
Gean-cannagh, the lovetalker, who seduces his victims and leaves them to die. And
then there are the countless Elf knights, Faery princes, and otherworldly girls who
have always haunted Fantasy.
And thereâ€™s the shapeshifting. Most Faery, in many cultures, tend to be capricious
and mysterious, with connections to the dead, fallen angels, the old gods, or the
four elements, and this variety of characters translates beautifully to contemporary
fiction. Faery queens become the ultimate Mean Girls, as in Holly Blackâ€™s Tithe
series or Maggie Stiefvaterâ€™s LAMENT, stealing mortal men to become their consorts. An evil
Elf Knight disguises himself as a tattoo artist in EXCEPT THE
QUEEN by Midori Snyder and Jane Yolen. A Faery king and queen hide in plain
sight as an ordinary/extraordinary family in John Crowleyâ€™s LITTLE, BIG.
A Faeryâ€™s shapeshifting qualities also tend to include animal characteristics,
another hallmark of demon loversâ€”the goat-footed Glaistig, the lovely kumiho (a
Korean fox spirit), and fish-tailed mermaidsâ€”all lure men to their doom. The
brooding Faery king Oberon in Neil Gaimanâ€™sTHE BOOKS OF
MAGIC has the horns of a ram. Judith Tarrâ€™s fairy lovers, Alf and Thea, in the
The Hound and the Falcon, have the eyes of cats.
â€˜Fayerieâ€™ means â€˜the art of enchantmentâ€™, and Faery is fascinatingly Other;
creatures who resemble us, but arenâ€™t us. And the more human a Faery/demon paramour
becomes, the more the balance of power shifts to the mortal. When the murderous Elf
in the ballad â€˜Isabel and the Elf Knightâ€™ is lured to sleep by his intended
prey, she kills him. The strutting Goblin King in the film Labyrinth loses
his power when denied. Other Faery become heroic when their emotions get the better
of them; the Pooka in Emma Bullâ€™s WAR FOR THE OAKS; the horned Faery prince in Holly
DARKEST PART OF THE FOREST; the ruthless and bereft Elven king Thranduil in
The Hobbit films.
JACK and BRIAR QUEEN, Jills and Jacks are literally heartless knights who
grow hearts when they fall in love. Thatâ€™s when they become vulnerable. The same
happens to the shapeshifting Fatasâ€”love becomes the downfall of the creatures who
call themselves the children of night and nothing.
So maybe itâ€™s the power of love, after all, that makes the romance of Faery so
Katherine Harbour was born in Albany, NY (upstate NY is where Thorn Jack takes
place) and now lives in Sarasota, FL. She briefly attended college in Minneapolis,
Minnesota, before attempting life as a painter (the artsy kind). She has been
writing since she was seventeen and juggling a few jobs while doing it.
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The dark, moody, and mystical fantasy begun in THORN JACK, the first novel in the
Night and Nothing series, continues in this bewitching follow upâ€”an
intriguing blend of Twilight, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Alice in Wonderland, and
A Midsummer Nightâ€™s Dreamâ€”in which Finn Sullivan discovers that her town, Fair
Hollow, borders a dangerous otherworld . . .
Serafina Sullivan and her father left San Francisco to escape the painful memory
of her older sister Lily Roseâ€™s suicide. But soon after she arrived in bohemian Fair
Hollow, New York, Finn discovered a terrifying secret connected to Lily Rose. The
placid surface of this picture-perfect town concealed an eerie supernatural worldâ€”
and at its center, the wealthy, beautiful, and terrifying Fata family.
Though the striking and mysterious Jack Fata tried to push Finn away to protect her,
their attraction was too powerful to resist. To save him, Finnâ€”a girl named for the
angels and a brave Irish princeâ€”banished a cabal of malevolent enemies to shadows,
freeing him from their diabolical grip.
Now, the rhythm of life in Fair Hollow is beginning to feel a little closer to
ordinary. But Finn knows better than to be lulled by this comfortable sense of
normalcy. Itâ€™s just the calm before the storm. For soon, a chance encounter outside
the magical Brambleberry Books will lead her down a rabbit hole, into a fairy world
of secrets and legacies . . . straight towards the shocking truth about her sisterâ€™s
Lush and gorgeously written, featuring star-crossed lovers and the collision of the
magical and the mundane, Briar Queen will appeal to the fans of Cassandra Clareâ€™s
bestselling Mortal Instruments series and Melissa Marrâ€™s Wicked Lovely.
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