Wilson & Alroy on High Fantasy Novels  


Now I'm going to lay some heavy stuff on you.

Back from the dead

Thought I got rid of you. Oh well.


Talk about bad breath.


Cute little sidekicks or evil little vermin.


You know, where the elves live. You can also have elf-like creatures with their own little kingdom (e.g., Red Moon And Black Mountain), but that doesn't quite count.

Female heroes

Girls can kick butt too. Honorable mentions: The Well At The World's End has two female heroes, but they're girlfriends of the main dude; Red Moon And Black Mountain has several heroic female characters.


Can't get enough of a good thing.

Naval battles

Batten down the hatches.

Shape changing

Talk about an identity crisis.

Transported children

The C. S. Lewis paradigm. If you're going to do it right, send several siblings off to fantasy land. One would be boring.

Transported heroes

A modern bloke is magically transported to a fantasy land. Honorable mentions: The Lost Continent opens with a modern adventurer finding an ancient manuscript; the hero of The Worm Ouroboros is the alter ego of the studly modern guy in the prolog; in Jack Of Shadows, Jack travels to a pseudo-Earth on the same planet as the fantasy land; in the Amber series, the hero is from the fantasy land and travels to Earth.

The underworld

Just visiting.


Honorable mention: centaurs (The Weirwoods).