Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Gilliland, Alexis A

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(1931-    ) US writer and cartoonist, better known for sf than for fantasy, but whose Wizenbeak sequence – Wizenbeak (1986), The Shadow Shaia (1990) and The Lord of the Troll-Bats (1992) – is of interest, partly because the eponymous Wizard made his first appearances in books of cartoons like The Iron Law of Bureaucracy (graph coll 1979), Who Says Paranoia Isn't "In" Anymore? (graph coll 1985) and The Waltzing Wizard (graph coll 1988), although the Wizenbeak of the acidly satirical cartoons has little in common with the genial book character. Beginning as a comic romp, featuring the moderately incompetent Wizenbeak in a world where rationalized Magic rules, it gradually darkens into a political commentary on power, politicians and just rule. The trollbats who actually do most of Wizenbeak's work turn out, absorbingly, to be members of a neighbouring species in whose homeland humans are slaves. [JC]

Alexis Arnaldus Gilliland


This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.