Joan (Carol) D(ennison) Vinge Christopher Priest - Essay

Christopher Priest

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

[With The Snow Queen we] are in the presence … of a successor to [Frank Herbert's] Dune and [Ursula Le Guin's] The Left Hand of Darkness.

However, comparisons are odious…. Because perhaps it ought to be said … that The Snow Queen is the quintessence of a certain kind of science fiction, a journey as far into the heartlands of the genre as it is possible to go without starting to come back. The publishers call this "worldcraft," and it is a form of novel that more and more sf writers are essaying these days: "worldcraft" is the depiction of an entire planet or world, described politically, culturally, geographically, sociologically, scientifically and sometimes...

(The entire section is 1000 words.)