Laurell K. Hamilton

Star Trek, The Empire

In Star Trek: TOS, the episode Mirror, Mirror introduced us to an alternate universe featuring an Earth dominated empire. Star Trek ‘the Franchise’ has managed to pull that same feat off in the real world.

Zero-Magic Fantasy

Zero-magic fantasy is a growing subgenre. But can it ever rise above the level of thought experiment? And what are the tradeoffs?

Crossroads: The Power in Paranormal Romance

Happy Valentine’s Day! In my first draft of this week’s essay, I started to trace the history of the paranormal romance all the way from the Gothic novel, through to noir, into romantic suspense, urban fantasy, and to the ass-kicking, leather-jacketed heroine that fills bookshelves today. While there’s nothing wrong with that approach, I came […]

Crossroads: Tripping the Noir Fantastic

Last week, we talked about some of the tensions between science fiction and noir. Fantasy, which relies on metaphor even more than science fiction, has an even more challenging time of it. Its traditional themes and techniques are oil to noir’s water, and yet the genre features some of the most compelling noir hybrids in […]