Stories of Fire and Ice
By A.S. Byatt
(Vintage, Paperback, 9780375705755, 240pp.)
Publication Date: July 11, 2000
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From the booker Prize-winning author of Possession comes this richly imaginitive story collection that transports the reader to a world where opposites--passion and loneliness, betrayal and loyalty, fire and ice--clash and converge.
A beautiful ice maiden risks her life when she falls in love with a desert prince, whose passionate touches scorch her delicate skin. A woman flees the scene of her husband's heart attack, leaving her entire past behind her. Striving to master color and line, a painter discovers the resolution to his artisitc problems when a beautiful and magical water snake appears in his pool. And a wealthy Englishwoman gradually loses her identity while wandering through a shopping mall. Elegantly crafter and suffused with boundless wisdom, these bewitching tales are a testament to a writer at the hieght of her powers.
A.S. Byatt is the author of the novels Possession (winner of the Booker Prize in 1990), The Game, and the sequence The Virgin in the Garden, Still Life, and Babel Tower. She has also written two novellas, published together as Angels and Insects, and four collections of shorter works, including The Matisse Stories and The Djinn in the Nightingale's Eye. Educated at Cambridge, she was a senior lecturer in English at University College, London, before becoming a full-time writer in 1983. A distinguished critic as well as a novelist, she lives in London.
"Fired by a fierce intelligence and related in shimmering prose. This eclectic little volume should delight A. S. Byatt's devoted readers and attract many new ones." -The New York Times
"A stunning display.... Elementals combines finely wrought stories with imagery as sparkling as jewels. It is a work that should not be missed." -The Denver Post
"A wonderful book-complex, amusing, clever, and thought-provoking--a reader's dream." -The Plain Dealer