HAND, Elizabeth


HAND, Elizabeth
(1957-)
   US writer and critic who began publishing fiction with "Prince of Flowers" for Twilight Zone Magazine in 1988. Her first novel, WINTERLONG (1990), set on Earth some hundreds or thousands of years hence,combines sf and fantasy materials in a way made familiar by writers of PLANETARY ROMANCES from Jack VANCE through Gene WOLFE to Richard GRANT(with whom she lives). The tale features baroque bioengineering, mythical resonances and ornate psychopathologies intensely glimpsed; the prose is occasionally very powerful, but the book is rather too long. A second volume set in the same universe, Aestival Tide (1992), showed a formidable improvement in its pacing , though necessarily abjuring some of the interwoven density of mood in the previous volume; the central city where the action occurs is superbly decadent, and the artificial woman, manufactured of glass and metal as a storage vehicle for human culture, is well-conceived. In the third volume, Icarus Descending (1993), the baroque superstructure of the dying world continues to collapse, accompanied by a revolt of the "geneslaves" who have been present throughout.EH's fourth novel, Waking the Moon (1994 UK; cut 1995 US), is a fantasy of history.
   JC

Science Fiction and Fantasy Encyclopedia. . 2011.

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