What Is Magical Realism?

You and I both know I’ve been in a “defining genres” kind of mood. The other day, I came across a discussion between two people struggling to define the difference between the Magical Realism and Fantasy genres. I was intrigued!

Despite hearing of Magical Realism and knowing a dozen agents on Manuscript Wishlist that wanted work in that genre, I had no clue what it was. So today, I want to share with you what I’ve learned.

How is Magical Realism defined?

Magical realism is a  characterized contrasting elements. On one hand, you have the seemingly grounded and realistic elements of literary fiction. This is depicted as the world as we know it, a tangible collection of what we experience in everyday life. On the other hand, magical realism melds this reality with a fantastical element. An ordinary world infused with the mythical and supernatural. At its core, the subgenre of literary fiction marries the magical with the mundane.

Examples of Magical Realism:

  • One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
  • Kafka On The Shore by Haruki Murakami
  • The Snow Child by  Eowyn Ivey
  • The Ocean At The End of The Lane by Neil Gaiman

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