Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Snyder, Midori

(1954-    ) US writer who began publishing fantasy with "Demon" for Bordertown (anth 1986) ed Terri Windling and Mark Alan Arnold, the second of the Borderlands Shared-World anthologies. Her first novel, Soulstring (1987), incorporates elements of the Twice-Told (suitors must pass tests to win the hand of a sorcerer's daughter, and die if they fail) into a tangled but sometimes moving tale. The Queen's Quarter sequence – New Moon (1989), Sadar's Keep (1990) and Beldan's Fire (1993) – is interestingly dark (and more coherently told) High Fantasy, based but not dependent on Celtic material (> Celtic Fantasy), depicting the centuries-long rule of immortal Zorah, who controls the Element of Fire, and whose tyranny is opposed by a complex cast. Much of the tale is set in a vast City whose labyrinthine ways are reminiscent of the London of Charles Dickens. The Flight of Michael McBride (1994) is also of interest, though MS's amiable style sometimes fails to convey the full rigours of the tale's mayhem. McBride, the young halfling son of a Fairy mother and the mortal father who won her from a lord of Faerie in a Chess match, undertakes a long Night Journey through a US West Crosshatched by deadly incursions of the Sidhe, during the course of which he finds himself locked into the form of a crow (> Transformation; Bondage) and succoured by the goddess Morrigu (> Morgan Le Fay). Eventually he comes to terms with the Story told him (among other fables) by his mother, which he is involuntarily re-enacting; and he completes his Rite of Passage by winning back his own mortal bride from the frustrated fairy lord. [JC]

Midori Madeleine Snyder


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.