Ellen Kushner's picture
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Ellen Kushner

USA flag (b.1955)

Ellen Kushner is an American writer of fantasy novels, and the host of the radio program Sound & Spirit, produced by WGBH in Boston and distributed by Public Radio International.

Kushner was born in Washington, DC and grew up in Cleveland, Ohio. She lives in New York City with her wife and sometime collaborator.

Genres: Fantasy, Children's Fiction
Series contributed to
Tremontaine Season One
   1. Arrivals (2016)
   13. Departures (2016)
   Tremontaine: The Complete Season 1 (2017) (with Patty Bryant, Joel Derfner, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Malinda Lo, Racheline Maltese and Paul Witcover)
Anthologies edited
   Basilisk (1980)
   The Horns of Elfland (1997) (with Donald G Keller and Delia Sherman)
   Welcome to Bordertown (2011) (with Holly Black)
Anthologies containing stories by Ellen Kushner
Short stories
The Unicorn Masque (1981)
Lazarus (1986)
Night Laughter (1986)
Sonata: For Two Friends in Different Times of the Same Trouble (1990)
The Swordsman Whose Name Was Not Death (1991)
Playing with Fire (1993)
The Hunt of the Unicorn (1995)
Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep (1995)
The Death of Raven (1997)
The Fall of the Kings [short story] (1997) (with Delia Sherman)World Fantasy (nominee)
The Death of the Duke (1998)World Fantasy (nominee)
Hot Water: a Bordertown Romance (1998)
The House of Nine Doors (1998)

Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature Best Book winner (1991) : Thomas the Rhymer
World Fantasy Best Novel winner (1991) : Thomas the Rhymer
World Fantasy Best Novella nominee (1998) : The Fall of the Kings [short story]
World Fantasy Best Short Story nominee (1999) : The Death of the Duke
Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature Best Book winner (2003) : The Fall of the Kings
Nebula Awards Best Novel nominee (2007) : The Privilege of the Sword
World Fantasy Best Novel nominee (2007) : The Privilege of the Sword

Ellen Kushner recommends
The Well-Favored Man (1993)
(Kingdom of Argylle, book 1)
Elizabeth Willey
"A compelling tale to rank with Roger Zelazny's Amber novels."
Trash Sex Magic (2004)
Jennifer Stevenson
"Ambitious, phantasmagorical, with images that burn into your brain and stay there."
The Magicians and Mrs. Quent (2008)
(Mrs. Quent, book 1)
Galen Beckett
"I loved reading this piquant page-turner of a retro-modernist fantasy novel. But it's more than just a rattling good time. Like its characters, it is not merely devastatingly clever, but has a heart and a soul."
Wylding Hall (2015)
Elizabeth Hand
"By turns comic, elegiac, sexy, romantic, melancholy, and downright chilling, Wylding Hall sweeps us along from swinging London to the terrifying gates of Faerie and into the present—where all spells must be paid for."
The Traitor Baru Cormorant (2015)
(Masquerade , book 1)
Seth Dickinson
"Stunning! There are moments that take my breath away."
A Tip for the Hangman (2021)
Allison Epstein
"The Christopher Marlowe book we’ve been waiting for! Here is the sexy, witty, self-destructive genius who can’t stay out of trouble, blazing through an Elizabethan period that comes vividly to life in Epstein's well-researched novel. Epstein's sentences shine, with nothing fussy or ‘Ye Olde’ about them. More than once I was stopped dead by a sentence that nailed me in my tracks with its insight and clarity."
All the Murmuring Bones (2021)
A G Slatter
"Like J.R.R. Tolkien, Slatter’s taken her personal invented mythos and crafted a world around it that is at once familiar and deeply strange. Lush and chilling, eerie and exquisite, brutal and elegant… I defy anyone to stop turning pages until they’ve come to the end."
Zoe Rosenthal Is Not Lawful Good (2021)
Nancy Werlin
"I love this book like no contemporary YA has ever been loved before! It's about finding your tribe. And what it feels like when you do. And how it changes you. Nancy Werlin naturally has to invent a series for her kids to be obsessed with: virus-hunters in space (and she wrote this 2 years ago!) - a renegade ship captained by a middle-aged Black woman and an all-female crew of physicians except for one mysterious man ... and two who share one body. Just reading bits of it is thrilling! She also goes deeper into what it means for each generation of women to see themselves in roles like Uhura, Princess Leia ... and even Squirrel Girl. I'm laughing on one page, sighing in awe and wonder on the next."
Never the Wind (2022)
Francesco Dimitri
"This book is so good that I am speechless. Staggeringly good! An extraordinarily powerful work. Dimitri casts his net into the sea of myth, and brings up a remarkable catch. Family, friendship, horror, humor, wit and deception - I have seldom read a book so powerful."

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