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From: Adam Stephanides <adamsteph@earthlink.net>
Subject: (whorl) TBOTSS as fantasy
Date: Sun, 18 Feb 2001 10:46:21 

on 2/14/01 6:08 AM, William Ansley at wansley@warwick.net wrote:

> I was also bothered by the impossibly large size of the (big)
> godling. Wolfe should make up his mind, is he writing science fiction
> or isn't he?
I think he isn't, actually.  I think RTTW, and TBOTSS as a whole, are more
fantasy than science fiction.

Allan Lloyd already pointed out other fantasy-like aspects of the books: the
Neighbors, who are more like helpful elves than sfnal aliens, have
unexplained powers, and can be called up by a magic ring; and the astral
travel, which can be FTL.  To which I would add the long-distance of Horn's
spirit into Silk, without the rationalizations supplied in TBOTLS for
possession via windows; and the inhumi's absorption of human's intelligence
by drinking their blood.

More than this, the whole feel of the series, to me, is more like
pre-Tolkien fantasy, where one fantastic episode followed another with no
attempt at rationalization or systematization [1], than like science

In other words, having written two series which were science fiction with a
fantasy-like veneer, Wolfe has followed them up with a third series of
fantasy with a science fiction veneer.


[1]  This is just a generalization; I'm sure there are exceptions.  And it's
not mine, but I don't remember where I got it from.

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