Some works by Kobo Abe such as Kangaroo Notebook.
Much of Angela Carter, including Nights at the Circus.
Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer.
Beloved by Toni Morrison.
Much of Haruki Murakami including The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.
The Passion by Jeanette Winterson.
Some of these are "underdeveloped"--certainly Beloved is, but not Murakami's work.
I would say that The Witches of Eastwick could certainly be classed as low fantasy since witches are standard fantasy characters.
: I was trying to think of something that could be called
: "Magical Realism", and that wasn't written
: by an author from a "underdeveloped"
: country, nor was about an "underdeveloped"
: environment, and then I remembered "The Witches
: of Eastwick", by John Updike, a novel about which
: I had very low expectations, but that turned out very
: enjoyable, and indeed it's one I might re-read some
: day. I guess by any standard, it's Magical Realism,
: but it's still a novel situated in the margins of
: society, in a remote and fictional town, and it deals
: with three women who "don't belong" to their
: environment: early 70īs divorcees, sexually active,
: forced to make a living and raise a family by
: themselves, that is, "witches". Can you
: think of any other novel like this one?
: --Previous Message--
: Character development: you are absolutely right,
: Sterling, and I think I said so before: characters
: don't need to be "likable", but they have to
: be well-developed. Now, what exactly does that mean?
: Aha, therein lies the magic of it all. You have to buy
: it, to want to go on reading about them even if they
: are despicable. Can you think of a character that is a
: "boring" person, but interesting as such?
: I'm wondering...
: --Previous Message--
: I have lamented
: that modern Latin American literature came to be
: identified in some quarters only with magical realism,
: i.e. books by Latin American authors that couldn't be
: categorized as such tended to be ignored or
: What an awful thought! Some Latin American authors
: (Borges, Garcia Marquez, et al.) come up with an
: excellent idea, which then turns into a straitjacket
: for authors from 20 or so countries!
: Plot / situation. Does the plot or the situation
: depicted stimulate your mind? We know many works of
: literary art need no plot, and then the way to present
: a plotless situation becomes relevant.
: Yes, plot is tricky. Used in a narrow sense of a
: "patterned" story, e.g., Tom Jones , few
: modern novels have plots (although David Mitchell
: does). However, it seems to me that a successful
: novel must have narrative momentum of some kind.
: Wittgenstein's Mistress, The Sense of an Ending, and
: Omensetter's Luck certainly do not have traditional
: plots, but they all have a compelling narrative. I
: was unable to read The Slynx because I felt that it
: has none.
: Character development. Do you care about the
: characters and their fate? Do they ring a bell in your
: psyche? Are they attractive as such?
: This one is debatable. Characters need to be
: compelling in some way, but not necessarily likeable
: or attractive. I didn't like anyone much in Sense of
: an Ending , but I thought it was a good novel. I
: didn't like the characters in The Sea , and I thought
: it was an excellent novel (with a clever plot). I was
: interested in the characters in both novels, and I
: suppose I cared what happened to them, but without
: liking them much. The ultimate example is probably
: The Prague Cemetery . And yet, I have come across
: books that affected me as The Bone People did both
: Steven and Guillermo in which I didn't want to spend
: any more time with the characters. It's hard to
: explain, isn't it?
: Isn't postmodernism in some ways a present day
: substitute? Thinking of such works as Gravity's
: Rainbow and Infinite Jest, we have the ridiculous and
: the absurd taking the place of the magical and the
: purely symbolic.
: Very interesting. I believe you're right. Pynchon,
: DFW, John Barth, and company all feature unrealistic
: events, situations, and so on, but they're not fantasy
: or even magic realism. I wonder why not?
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