Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Shinn, Sharon

(1957-    ) US writer whose first novel, The Shape-Changer's Wife (1995), made an immediate impact through the grace and swiftness of its narrative, which unfolds the gradual realization of young Aubrey that not only the servants of the Wizard who is teaching him Shapeshifting but also the wizard's wife have all been shapeshifted from original nonhuman forms. The housekeeper is a Spider; Orion the handyman is a bear; and Lilith, with whom Aubrey falls in love, is a Dryad. His slow and reluctant course towards a recognition of Lilith's true Story – the painful Bondage into which she has been cast – is conveyed with genuine feeling throughout the text, and is an unusually clear example of the Recognition of a passage into adulthood and power (see also Rite of Passage). [JC]

Sharon Ruth Shinn


This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.