Elizabeth Hand
Elizabeth Hand at Finncon 2007 in Jyväskylä, Finland
Elizabeth Hand at Finncon 2007 in Jyväskylä, Finland
Born (1957-03-29) March 29, 1957 (age 65)
Yonkers, New York
GenreScience fiction, Fantasy

Elizabeth Hand (born March 29, 1957) is an American writer.

Life and career

Hand grew up in Yonkers and Pound Ridge, New York. She studied drama and anthropology at The Catholic University of America. Since 1988, Hand has lived in coastal Maine, the setting for many of her stories, and as of 2017 lives in Lincolnville.[1] She also lives part-time in Camden Town, London which has been the setting for Mortal Love and the short story "Cleopatra Brimstone".

Hand's first story, "Prince of Flowers", was published in 1988 in Twilight Zone magazine, and her first novel, Winterlong, was published in 1990. With Paul Witcover, she created and wrote DC Comics' 1990s cult series Anima.[2] Hand's other works include Aestival Tide (1992); Icarus Descending (1993); Waking the Moon (1994), which won the Tiptree Award and the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award; the post-apocalyptic novel Glimmering (1997); contemporary fantasy Black Light (1999), a New York Times Notable Book; the historical fantasy Mortal Love (2004), a Washington Post Notable Book; the psychological thriller Generation Loss (2007), and the World Fantasy Award-winning "The Maiden Flight of McCauley's Bellerophon". Her story collections are Last Summer at Mars Hill (1998) (which includes the Nebula and World Fantasy award-winning title novella); Bibliomancy (2002), winner of the World Fantasy Award;[3] and Saffron and Brimstone: Strange Stories, which includes the Nebula Award-winning "Echo" (2006). Mortal Love was also shortlisted for the 2005 Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature.

Among Hand's other recent short fiction, "Pavane for a Prince of the Air" (2002) and "Cleopatra Brimstone" (2001) won International Horror Guild Awards.[4] Most recently, she won the Shirley Jackson Award for Generation Loss and the World Fantasy Award in 2008 for Illyria.[3]

She also writes movie and television spin-offs, including Star Wars tie-in novels and novelizations of such films as The X-Files and 12 Monkeys. She contributed a Bride of Frankenstein novel to the recent series of classic movie monster novels published by Dark Horse Comics.

One of Hand's themes from the Winterlong saga is the remorseless exploitation of animal and plant species to create what she calls "geneslaves." Examples include a three-hundred-year-old genetically reconstructed and cerebrally augmented Basilosaurus by the name of Zalophus; the aardmen, hybrids of dog and man; hydrapithecenes, human-fish or human-cuttlefish hybrids somewhat resembling Davy Jones and his crew from the Pirates of the Caribbean film series; and sagittals, whelks genetically engineered to be worn as a bracelet and, when its host feels threatened or agitated, extrude a spine laced with a deadly neurotoxin.

Hand is a longtime reviewer and critic for The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Boston Review, Salon, and Village Voice, among others. She also writes a regular review column for the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction.


This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (August 2020)


Cass Neary Crime Novels

Star Wars Expanded Universe


Short fiction


Book reviews

Year Review article Work(s) reviewed
2000 Hand, Elizabeth (May 2000). "Books". F&SF. 98 (5): 29–34.
  • Bailey, Dale (1999). American nightmares : the haunted house formula in American popular fiction. Bowling Green State University Popular Press.
2011 Hand, Elizabeth (July–August 2011). "Books". F&SF. 121 (1&2): 42–48.
  • Pacitti, Tony (2010). My best friend is a Wookie. Adams Media.
  • Yu, Charles (2010). How to live in a science fictional universe. Pantheon.
  • Kimmel, Daniel M. (2011). Jar Jar Binks must die ... and other observations about science fiction movies. Fantastic Books.


  1. ^ Elizabeth Hand Biography - life, family, children, parents, name, story, history, mother, young, book - Newsmakers Cumulation Retrieved 2017-04-28.
  2. ^ Elizabeth Hand – SCIFIPEDIA Archived July 21, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ a b World Fantasy Convention (2010). "Award Winners and Nominees". Archived from the original on December 1, 2010. Retrieved February 4, 2011.
  4. ^ "ElizabethHand.com". Archived from the original on May 18, 2006. Retrieved June 5, 2020.
  5. ^ Publishers Weekly. "Elizabeth Hand.com". Elizabeth Hand.com. Archived from the original on July 16, 2012. Retrieved October 19, 2012.