The New York Times

Children's Books: Fantasy

A SHAPE-SHIFTING FOX, A SENTIENT ISLAND, AN EERILY PERFECT TOWN AND TWINS WHO USE MAGIC TO STAY TOGETHER.

Beloved by young readers, speculative fiction often gets a very different reception from grown-ups, some of whom lament that such books lack the depth of literary fiction, especially if — horrors! — they are popular ones in a series. It took a tsunami of media attention to get such adults to capitulate to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books and, once they did, they raved about the series as an exception, seemingly unaware of its distinguished lineage. Fortunately, others feel differently, aware that some of the most inventive, enthralling, provocative and (yes) literary writing for children comes in this form. Setting their stories in invented places,

This article originally appeared in .

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

Related Interests

More from The New York Times

The New York Times6 min read
Fear, Anxiety and Hope: What It Means to Be a Minority in Gaming
(Circuits) Five years after “Gamergate,” little seems to have changed in the industry for minorities, women and members of the L.G.B.T.Q. community. Here are six stories of people trying to change that.
The New York Times7 min read
Ali Wong Is Crossing Lines Again,This Time in a Book
The star of two uproarious Netflix comedy specials is nervous about how people will react to her essay collection. “I hope my siblings don’t get pissed at me,” she says.
The New York Times4 min read
When You Take a Great Photo, Thank the Algorithm in Your Phone
Not too long ago, tech giants like Apple and Samsung raved about the number of megapixels they were cramming into smartphone cameras to make photos look clearer. Nowadays, all the handset-makers are shifting focus to the algorithms, artificial intell