Game of thrones a recent HBO series based on GRR Martin’s fantasy series a song of fire and ice has gathered a large fanbase in the 19 episodes aired till now. The books are themselves bestsellers. Other books in the same genre like the Inheritance series by Christopher Paolini , Malazan series by Steve Erickson, Tolkien’s Lord of the rings, the Twilight saga by Stephenie Meyer  and their Televison adaptations have witnessed great popularity in recent times.

 The common feature amongst all these books is that they all deal with magic, myths and generally things of the past. Barring a few exceptions they are mostly set in a medieval background. Many of these books were penned in the previous millennium when fantasy was by and large dominated by science fiction like Starwars, Startrek, Doctor Who Stargate. This change from the future to the past can easily be attributed to the social aspirations and conditions of the time.

 Fire breathing DragonCredit: period after WWII was a time of significant and fast paced scientific progress. This was the era of the three greats of science fiction, Isaac Asimov, Robert A Heinlein and Arthur C Clarke who along with several other prominent writers produced what we can call the classics of their genre. New discoveries and inventions, the cold war and finally the race to the moon sprouted numerous conspiracy theories about secret weapons and extra terrestrials were ambrosia for the masses and the future seemed full of endless possibilities good or bad.

 It is obvious that we do not feel so strongly about such things, the concerns of today holding greater importance. The truth is we are not so confident about our future, the worlds beset with a whole lot of problems and a realistic approach is preferred while dealing with them. No one expects gizmos that take care of all our problems to be invented any time soon and the world is expected to remain pretty much the same in the near future and that’s why the future has lost its charm. The realm of medieval fantasy, magic and myth is something we know will never come true yet we wish that it did. The great deeds and the lives of our fantastic heroes seem so appealing when contrasted with our own constrained lives. Its not the child in every adult that is eager to lap up the words of these great authors, perhaps a fatalistic trend that has gripped the world.