Next SFF Author: Jenna Black
Previous SFF Author: John Blackburn

SFF Author: Holly Black

Holly Black is the author of bestselling contemporary fantasy books for kids and teens. Some of her titles include The Spiderwick Chronicles (with Tony DiTerlizzi), The Modern Faerie Tale series, the Curse Workers series, Doll Bones, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, the Magisterium series (with Cassandra Clare) and The Darkest Part of the Forest. She has been a a finalist for an Eisner Award, and the recipient of the Andre Norton Award, the Mythopoeic Award and a Newbery Honor. She currently lives in New England with her husband and son in a house with a secret door.


CLICK HERE FOR MORE STORIES BY HOLLY BLACK.



testing

Tithe: Engaging characters in complex situations

Tithe by Holly Black

Kaye is not your typical 16-year-old. For one thing, she’s spent the last few years of her life acting as mother to her mother: holding Mom’s head as she vomits, following Mom around to her various unsuccessful singing gigs, working in a Chinese restaurant to make enough money so that she and Mom can eat from time to time. She doesn’t attend school and she isn’t happy in the least.

For another thing, as a child she used to have a few fairies as dear friends.


Read More



testing

The Poison Eaters and Other Stories: Dark, gorgeous, emotional

The Poison Eaters and Other Stories by Holly Black

The first collection of short stories by author Holly Black, The Poison Eaters and Other Stories is dark, gorgeous, and emotionally compelling. Ranging from longer stories to short little character sketches, Black has created a handful of settings and characters that will live on in memory long after you close this slim volume. Holly Black manages to evoke an incredibly detailed world with a spare prose that conveys the static crackle of a remote video feed,


Read More



testing

THE SPIDERWICK CHRONICLES: A great little set of books

THE SPIDERWICK CHRONICLES by Holly Black

Although the book in The Spiderwick Chronicles were originally published separately (five in all), I knew it was only a matter of time before a box set was released, and so held off purchasing the separate installments so that I could invest in the complete set. I’m glad I waited, as one of the best things about this series is its beautiful presentation (the phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover” has little meaning here), and this nifty box set protects and displays them to best effect.


Read More



testing

The Nixie’s Song: A new trilogy in the Spiderwick world

The Nixie’s Song by Holly Black

After the five-part The Spiderwick Chronicles ended with a promise that there would be more to follow in the Spiderwick world, it was only a matter of time before there was another installment in the series. Now we pick up in the first book of a proposed trilogy that features a new set of children (two step-siblings) and a different location (the mangrove swamps of Florida as opposed to the old world charm of New England), but with plenty of new faerie lore incorporated into the story.


Read More



testing

A Giant Problem: Characters have improved

A Giant Problem by Holly Black

In A Giant Problem, the second book of the sequel/spin-off to the original The Spiderwick Chronicles, we meet up again with our two protagonists: stepsiblings Nick (surly and portly) and Laurie (dreamy and cunning), who are getting along reasonably well in the wake of their discoveries in the previous book The Nixie’s Song.

Having allied themselves with the half-blind and near-senile Noseeum Jack (this book’s version of wise-but-dotty Aunt Lucinda) the two are learning all they can about the awakening giants that are threatening their parents’


Read More



testing

The Wyrm King: A treat, as always

The Wyrm King by Holly Black

The third and final part of Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi’s collaborative effort is called The Wyrm King, following on from The Nixie’s Song and A Giant Problem, part of the Beyond the Spiderwick trilogy which in turn is a sequel to the original The Spiderwick Chronicles series (why are fantasy titles so convoluted?) and which wraps up the trilogy in a satisfying, action-picked finale.


Read More



testing

Care and Feeding of Sprites: Another beautiful book

Care and Feeding of Sprites by Holly Black

Since the publication of the five-part Spiderwick Chronicles there have been three “spin-off” publications: Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World Around You (a copy of the book that featured so heavily in the Chronicles themselves), A Notebook for Fantastical Observations, designed for readers themselves to fill out, and this, Care and Feeding of Sprites. If you can only choose one of them, then the pick of the litter is undoubtedly the Field Guide,


Read More



testing

Kin: A brooding otherworld

Kin by Holly Black

When I first opened Kin by Holly Black, I was surprised to find it was a graphic novel. Once I started reading, I was absorbed in the story of Rue Silver, a slightly punk college student who is facing an unexpected crisis in her life. Her mother has disappeared, and her father has been arrested for her murder, and the murder of one of his grad students. And to make matters worse, Rue has started seeing people — or more precisely things — that shouldn’t be able to exist.


Read More



testing

Kith: Lacks emotional impact

Kith by Holly Black

Kith is the second installment in The Good Neighbors, Holly Black’s series of graphic novels about Rue, a young woman whose life is torn apart when her mother disappears. Kin, the first book in this series, traces Rue’s discovery that her mother is a fairy princess who returns to her own people when Rue’s father is unfaithful. Kith picks up the action as the fairy world fights for Rue to join her mother,


Read More



testing

White Cat: A YA series with an interesting magic system

White Cat by Holly Black

White Cat (2010), the first book in Holly Black‘s The Curse Workers series, focuses on Cassel, a teenage boy born into a family of workers. Working magic is illegal, which means anyone born with the gift — his entire family — either works for the mob or as a con artist. Except Cassel, that is, because Cassel doesn’t have a gift. What he does have is strange dreams that make him sleepwalk, and end up in the strangest places,


Read More



testing

Red Glove: Sacrifices the main plot for intriguing settings and secondary characters

Red Glove by Holly Black

Following the events of White Cat, Red Glove (2011) finds Cassel, the protagonist of Holly Black’s series THE CURSE WORKERS, simultaneously dealing with no shortage of familial drama and direct fallout from his actions in the earlier installment. Red Glove is thus a direct continuation of the series that seeks to build upon the established characters, world, and particular circumstances revealed at the end of the first novel: with varying success.


Read More



testing

The Urban Fantasy Anthology: Not what I expected it to be

The Urban Fantasy Anthology edited by Peter S. Beagle & Joe R. Lansdale

It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of most urban fantasy. I tend to find problems with almost every urban fantasy book I’ve tried to read. When I got this book in the mail, I kind of rolled my eyes and shot it to the top of my “to be read” pile so I could get it over with fast. I didn’t expect to actually enjoy this book. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d open this anthology and think,


Read More



testing

A Flight of Angels: A beautiful anthology

A Flight of Angels by Rebecca Guay (illustrator)

Stories by Holly Black, Bill Willingham, Alisa Kwitney, Louise Hawes and Todd Mitchell

An angel has fallen. Led by their insatiable curiosity, the hosts of fae have followed the descent of the white-winged creature and now gather around his still-breathing body to decide what to do with him. They decide to hold a trial, and present evidence in the form of stories about the deeds of angels to decide whether or not to let him live.


Read More



testing

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown: I was expecting her to be a little bit colder

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a novel of the same name as a short story in Holly Black’s The Poison Eaters, and anthology of delightfully dark YA stories, all with particular flavours and drawing on different myths from around the world. The Coldest Girl in Coldtown finds the reader in a post-vampiricism-infected United States. The cities in which the largest outbreaks occurred were swiftly enclosed (earning the name ‘Coldtowns’), trapping vampires,


Read More



testing

The Iron Trial: A mixed bag, but entertaining enough

The Iron Trial by Holly Black & Cassandra Clare

I listened to The Iron Trial, by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare on audiobook, narrated by Paul Boehmer. It tells the story of Callum Hunt, or Cal, a boy who enrolls in a magical boarding school, makes friends, irritates teachers, and finds out he’s been marked from birth by the greatest enemy the magical world knows. Sounds familiar, right?

I read a lot of complaining reviews about this Middle Grade book, all accusing The Iron Trial of being a Harry Potter rip-off.


Read More



testing

The Darkest Part of the Forest: A fairy-tale remix with a touch of realism

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

Once upon a time, in a town called Fairfold, Holly Black set her story for her stand-alone novel The Darkest Part of the Forest. The dark faerie-tale fuses the fantastical with the mundane, as humans and Fae folk exist alongside one another, the faeries even being a huge source of tourism for the little town. That is an original and intriguing premise if there ever was one, with promises of dark twists and turns. But somewhere along the lines the plot failed in its execution,


Read More



testing

Lucifer, Volume One: Cold Heaven by Holly Black

Lucifer, Volume One: Cold Heaven Written by Holly Black  and Drawn by Lee Garbett and Stephanie Hans

Vertigo’s Lucifer, Volume One: Cold Heaven is a murder mystery and a family saga. Released in 2016, it is the point where Holly Black takes over writing the saga of Lucifer Morningstar. Lucifer left his assignment as ruler of Hell to confront his father (God) and then left this universe completely, giving it to the daughter of Archangel Michael to caretake. Now he’s back, weakened and wounded. Another angel,


Read More



testing

The Cruel Prince: Starts a new YA series by Holly Black

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

When they were young, Jude and her twin sister witnessed the murder of their parents by their older stepsister’s father, Madoc. Feeling some responsibility for the girls, Madoc took all of them to live with him in the High Court of Faerie. Bullied by the fae nobles, and made to feel like a worthless mortal, Jude learned that’d she’d have to fight to survive. Now she’s scrappy, ambitious, clever, and an opportunist. But she still has a soft side.

It took me a while to warm up to The Cruel Prince (2018),


Read More



testing

The Lost Sisters: Answers questions, provides depth

The Lost Sisters by Holly Black

Twin sisters Jude and Taryn were taken to live in the Court of Elfhame after their parents were murdered by Madoc, a general in the land of faerie who is now their step-father and guardian. We witnessed how these mortal girls struggled as they came of age in the land of faerie in the first novel in Holly Black’s THE FOLK OF THE AIR series, The Cruel Prince, which was written from Jude’s perspective.


Read More



testing

The Wicked King: An exciting middle book!

The Wicked King by Holly Black

The Wicked King (2019) is the second book in Holly Black’s THE FOLK OF THE AIR series. The first book, The Cruel Prince, and a supplementary novella, The Lost Sisters, introduced us to Jude and Taryn, mortal twin sisters who were brought to faerie after their parents were murdered by Madoc, a former general in the Court of Elfhame who is now raising the twins as his own daughters.


Read More



testing

Magazine Monday: Adams Takes Over at Fantasy Magazine

John Joseph Adams, in recent years the editor of a raft of excellent anthologies on different science fiction, fantasy and horror themes, has now become the editor of Fantasy Magazine. The March 2011 issue is the first published under his red pencil, so to speak, and its mix of new and reprint fantasy material is promising. All content is free on the web, though ebook subscriptions and editions are available for sale.

“The Sandal-Bride,” by Genevieve Valentine, is about Sara, a woman who needs to travel from one land to another to join her husband,


Read More



testing

The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales

The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales is another thematic fantasy anthology by the trio of Ellen Datlow, Terri Windling, and Charles Vess. Coyote Road features twenty-six pieces of fiction and poetry. Each story is preceded by art by Vess and ends with a short bio and afterword from the author. In the Introduction, Windling gives us an extensive account of trickster tales around the world.


Read More



testing

Troll’s Eye View: A Book of Villainous Tales

Troll’s Eye View: A Book of Villainous Tales edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

Fairy tales were my first love when I was a child. My mother introduced me to the joys of stories with The Golden Book of Fairy Tales long before I learned how to read. My early reading included the first three volumes of The Junior Classics and Andrew Lang’s colorful fairy tale books. When Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling started editing anthologies of new takes on the old tales for adults with Snow White,


Read More



testing

Wings of Fire: I thought I didn’t like dragons

Wings of Fire edited by Jonathan Strahan & Marianne S. Jablon

I don’t like dragons.

This is probably not the first sentence you’d expect to find in a review of Wings of Fire, an anthology devoted exclusively to dragon stories, but I thought it best to get it out of the way right from the start.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with dragons. They’re just terribly overused, one of those tired genre mainstays that people who typically don’t read a lot of fantasy will expect in a fantasy novel because they were practically unavoidable for a long time.


Read More



testing

Sympathy for the Devil: A collection of bedtime stories

Sympathy for the Devil edited by Tim Pratt

Please allow me to introduce Sympathy for the Devil, a fine new anthology filled entirely with short stories about the devil… who is, as we all know, a man of style and taste. However, you won’t just find the smooth-talking stealer of souls here. In addition to that famous version of His Grand Infernal Majesty, you’ll also find funny devils, monstrous devils, abstract devils and strangely realistic ones. Devils scary and not-so-scary, devils who are after children’s souls and others going after old men.


Read More



testing

The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm

The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm edited by Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling

The Faery Reel is an indispensable tome for anyone who has a mania for faeries. Aside from the short stories in this anthology, the comprehensive introduction of Terri Windling on the fey and the illustrations by Charles Vess are worth the price of admission in themselves. Moreover, the last few pages feature a Further Reading section on the topic of faeries. The typography of the book is appropriate to the faery theme and makes the text quite readable.


Read More



testing

Zombies vs. Unicorns: Fun YA anthology

Zombies vs. Unicorns edited by Holly Black & Justine Larbalestier

Back in 2007, Holly Black and Justine Larabalestier got in an argument about which fiction creature was superior — zombies or unicorns. Spurred on by that debate, they each recruited some of their author friends to write short tales in which they present the storytelling possibilities of the two mythic beasts. With header notes for each story in which they discuss the historical background for the different takes on the creatures, Holly Black heads up Team Unicorn,


Read More



testing

Steampunk!: An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories

Steampunk!: An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories by Kelly Link & Gavin J. Grant (eds.)

Steampunk!: An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories is a new young adult collection edited by veteran anthologists Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant. Featuring twelve conventional short stories and two graphic entries, Steampunk! showcases a wide variety of ideas and styles that fall under the steampunk umbrella. The collection is entertaining and is lent extra freshness by the variety of settings explored by the authors: none of the stories are set in Victorian London.


Read More



testing

Dark Duets: A horror anthology

Dark Duets edited by Christopher Golden

Christopher Golden explains in his introduction to Dark Duets that writing is a solitary occupation right up until that moment an alchemical reaction takes place and a bolt of inspiration simultaneously strikes two writers who are friends. Golden has found that the results of collaboration are often fascinating and sometimes magical, as when Stephen King and Peter Straub teamed up to write The Talisman. Writing is an intimate,


Read More



testing

Monstrous Affections: Chock full of horror and hormones

Monstrous Affections by Kelly Link & Gavin Grant 

Monstrous Affections: An Anthology of Beastly Tales, a new anthology by Kelly Link and Gavin Grant, was an interesting and surprising read. Interesting because, duh, anything the duo behind Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet puts together has to be great. And surprising because nothing on the cover prepared me for its YA-focus.

And let’s talk about the cover for a second, because it is incredible. Red thistles explode out of line-drawn stems.


Read More



testing

Magic City: Recent Spells: A solid urban fantasy anthology

Magic City: Recent Spells edited by Paula Guran

Things you should know:
1. This is a reprint anthology. If you read a lot of anthologies in the field, you will probably have read some of these before. I had read three, though two of them were among the best ones, and I enjoyed reading them again.
2. It still has some worthwhile stuff in it, especially if you’re a fan of the big names in urban fantasy (Jim Butcher, Carrie Vaughn, Patricia Briggs) and haven’t read these stories before.


Read More



Next SFF Author: Jenna Black
Previous SFF Author: John Blackburn

We have reviewed 8324 fantasy, science fiction, and horror books, audiobooks, magazines, comics, and films.

Subscribe to all posts:

Get notified about Giveaways:

Support FanLit

Want to help us defray the cost of domains, hosting, software, and postage for giveaways? Donate here:


You can support FanLit (for free) by using these links when you shop at Amazon:

US          UK         CANADA

Or, in the US, simply click the book covers we show. We receive referral fees for all purchases (not just books). This has no impact on the price and we can't see what you buy. This is how we pay for hosting and postage for our GIVEAWAYS. Thank you for your support!
Try Audible for Free

Recent Discussion:

  1. Marion Deeds
  2. Avatar
  3. Marion Deeds
  4. Avatar
July 2024
M T W T F S S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031