What is a narrative? What is narrative fiction? How does it differ from other kinds of narrative? What featuers turn a discourse into a narrative text? Now widely acknowledged as one of the most significant volumes in its field, Narrative Fiction turns its attention to these and other questions. In contrast to many other studies, Narrative Fiction is organized arround issues - such as events, time, focalization, characterization, narration, the text and its reading - rather than individual theorists or approaches. Within this structure, Shlomith Rimmon-Kenan addresses key approaches to narrative fiction, including New Criticism, formlaism, structuralism and phenomenology, but also offers views of the modifications to these theroies. While presenting an analysis of the system governing all fictional narratives, whether in the form of novel, short story or narrative poem, she also suggests how individual narratives can be studied against the background of this general system. A broad range of literary examples illustrate key aspects of the study. This edition is brought fully up-to-date with an invaluable new chpater, reflecting on recent developments in narratology. Readers are also directed to key recent works in the field. These additions to a classic text ensure that Narrative Fiction will remain the ideal starting point for anyone new to narrative theory.