Skip to Main Content
Skip to main content

Children's and Young Adult Literature: Fantasy



"One element characteristic of fantasy is the presence of magic, or any other form of the supernatural, in an otherwise realistic, recognizable world. This presence may be manifest in the form of magical beings, objects, or events, and it may be unfolded into a whole universe or reduced to just one tiny magical bit... Fairy tales take place in one magical world, detached from our own both in space and in time. By contrast, the initial setting of fantasy literature is reality: a riverbank in Oxford (Alice in Wonderland), a farm in Kansas (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz), or a manor house in central England during World War II (The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe). From this realistic setting, the characters are transported to some magical realm, and most often, although not always, brought safely back."

Zipes, J. D. (2006). The Oxford encyclopedia of children's literature. Oxford University Press.

Professional reading

Featured title

Locating fantasy literature for youth

Browse the USask Library Catalogue to locate selected fantasy literature in our collection.