by Guy Gavriel Kay

The links below lead to an extremely selective listing of works I used in researching the ‘historical’ fantasies. It would feel silly at this point for me to try going back to a decade’s worth of reading in myth and legend, Arthuriana, and Celtic, Norse, or shamanistic traditions to make such a listing for Fionavar.

It would also be, even on the later novels, ponderous (and impossible) to offer a full listing of the books that helped me with background information or inspiration for each novel. Reconstructing sources, even one’s own, is not always an easy task.

On the other hand, I am often asked what books I suggest for readers who have an interest in the periods I’ve explored, or aspects of those periods, and this seems an opportunity to address that. I used the Acknowledgements in each book to mention a few authors each time but here I can be more exact, and by making the lists selective I can also do a bit of screening for those interested, highlighting books I found most perceptive, useful, entertaining.

I’m going to keep this relaxed and not offer formal bibliographic publishing information. Among other things, there will be different editions in different countries (and languages) and I’m assuming that people reading this can use their own websearch techniques to find the titles – or use the links being offered by Deborah Meghnagi here to access an online bookstore.


A Song for Arbonne
The Lions of Al-Rassan
The Sarantine Mosaic
The Last Light of the Sun
Byzantium and Sailing to Byzantium poems by William Butler Yeats

[Webmaster’s note: The linked book titles link through to, although some of the books are out of print and thus the links go to Amazon’s out of print search service. Those which aren’t linked are products for which I was unable to find links on Amazon at all.]

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