Review: The Snow Queen


The Snow Queen
by Joan D. Vinge


1980 • 471 pages • Dial Press

One of the things I love most about genre fiction is texture. I think it has something to do with imprinting on Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings film trilogy at puberty; there is something soothing and fascinating about exploring a meticulously put together and elegantly revealed world, be that world the future, the past, or something completely different through an engaging story. Actually finding such a world in genre fiction can be rare—because of how selectively I read (look, I know it doesn’t seem that way, but I can be discerning sometimes), I tend to read a higher percentage of great worldbuilding, but I have spent my fair share of time picking through every sf book available at bookstores, as both a customer and an employee. So it sometimes feels like an event when I do find a book with the kind of swooning texture that makes me slip my skein of skin and look up at the end of my commute and remember, wonderingly, where I am and who I am.

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The Literary Horizon: The Snow Queen, Cold Magic

As December comes to a close and Christmas rolls around, I’m feeling downright cheerful about winter—and I’m a cold-blooded person, so I usually don’t care for the weather. But I’m almost excited about the prospect that it might snow on Christmas here in Georgia. To celebrate that unique feeling of winter, today I’m going to feature two speculative titles that thematically deal with winter and coldness—and it doesn’t hurt that they both have female leads!

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