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Charles De-Lint

Charles de Lint fantasy author(1951- )
Charles de Lint is a pioneer of urban fantasy and has won awards for his fiction, including the World Fantasy Award. His non-fiction has included book and music reviews, critical essays, opinion columns and encyclopedia entries. He is the main book reviewer for The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. He’s also been a judge for the Nebula Award, the World Fantasy Award, the Theodore Sturgeon Award and the Bram Stoker Award. De Lint has taught creative writing workshops in Canada and the United States, and served as Writer-in-residence for two public libraries in Ottawa. A professional musician for many years, he writes original songs and performs with his wife, MaryAnn Harris. His main instruments are guitar, flute, fiddle, whistles and vocals. You can read Charles de Lint‘s thoughts about his work at his website.

Moonheart

Moonheart — (1984,1992) Spiritwalk contains the stories Ghostwood, Asican in Rose, Westlin Wind, and Merlin Dreams in the Moondream Wood. Publisher: When Sara and Jamie discovered the seemingly ordinary artifacts, they sensed the pull of a dim and distant place. A world of mists and forests, of ancient magics, mythical beings, ageless bards… and restless evil. Now, with their friends and enemies alike — Blue, the biker; Keiran, the folk musician; the Inspector from the RCMP; and the mysterious Tom Hengyr — Sara and Jamie are drawn into this enchanted land through the portals of Tamson House, that sprawling downtown edifice that straddles two worlds. Sweeping from ancient Wales to the streets of Ottawa today, Moonheart will entrance you with its tale of this world and the other one at the very edge of sight… and the unforgettable people caught up in the affairs of both. A tale of music, and motorcycles, and fey folk beyond the shadows of the moon. A tale of true magic; the tale of Moonheart...

Charles de Lint Moonheart, Ascian in Rose, Westlin Wind, Ghostwood, SpiritwalkCharles de Lint Moonheart, Ascian in Rose, Westlin Wind, Ghostwood, Spiritwalk
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Moonheart: A truly satisfying read

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Moonheart by Charles de Lint

Sara and her uncle Jamie live in Tamson House, the old family mansion that takes up a street block in Ottawa. While Sara runs their cluttered curiosity shop, Jamie spends his days studying the arcane and playing host to the eccentrics and homeless people who come and go through Tamson House. Sara and Jamie’s interests collide when Sara discovers an old gold ring that seems to draw her into an ancient past — a past where Welsh and Native American mythology comes alive. But not only does the ring pull Sara in, it draws Tamson House, and all its occupants, with it.

Moonheart was a truly satisfying read for me. I fell in love with Tamson House — just the idea of a big sprawling mansion that exists in two worlds is enough to fascinate me. Tamson House was my favorite “character” in Moonheart but, as rar... Read More

Newford

Newford — (1990-2015) Each of these novels can stand alone, but they all take place in a fictional contemporary city (Newford) and have recurring characters. The Dreaming Place, The Blue Girl, Little (Grrl) Lost, and Dingo are young adult novels. From a Whisper to a Scream and I’ll Be Watching You are horrors which were originally written under the penname Samuel M. Key.

Dreams Underfoot, The Ivory and the Horn, Moonlight and Vines, Tapping the Dream Tree, The Hour Before Dawn, and Muse and Reverie are story collections. Old Man Crow is a chapbook. We are presenting the books in the reading order which Mr. de Lint suggests.

Publisher: Welcome to Newford… Welcome to the music clubs, the waterfront, the alleyways where ancient myths and magic spill into the modern world. Come meet Jilly, painting wonders in the rough city streets; and Geordie, playing fiddle while he dreams of a ghost; and the Angel of Grasso Street gathering the fey and the wild and the poor and the lost. Gemmins live in abandoned cars and skells traverse the tunnels below, while mermaids swim in the grey harbor waters and fill the cold night with their song.

dreams underfoot de lintdreaming place de lintfrom a whisper to a scream de linti'll be watching you de lintmemory and dream de lintCharles deLint The Ivory and the Horn Newfordtradersomeplace to be flying de lintmoonlight and vinesforests of the heartthe onion girltapping the dream treespirits in the wiresthe medicine roadthe blue girlwiddershinsthe hour before dawnold man crowlittle (Grrl) lostpromises to keepdingoCharles de Lint Muse and Reverie

Memory and Dream: Passes the most important test

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Memory and Dream by Charles de Lint

“In the world of fairy tales, what was strange was also invariably trustworthy. One quickly learned to depend upon the old beggar woman, the hungry bird, the grateful fox.”

I didn’t realize how much I’d missed Charles de Lint’s urban fantasies until I borrowed Memory and Dream from a friend on a whim. I haven’t been reading much of his stuff for the past couple of years, and I’m not even sure why.

I do know that the landscape of urban fantasy has changed. Memory and Dream, published in 1994, is vastly different from the novels that are in vogue now. In de Lint’s work, and in the work of other writers publishing in the subgenre at the time, the Otherworld is both a metaphor for being out of place in mainstream society and a place where th... Read More

Someplace to be Flying: Memorable, quixotic, original characters

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Someplace to be Flying by Charles de Lint

Someplace to be Flying is the story of a gypsy cab driver and a freelance photographer who meet each other during a chance encounter with the “Animal People” in a dark alley in the familiar setting of Newford. This glimpse into a magical other world leaves them reeling, and as they seek out an explanation for the impossible, they are drawn deeper into the world of the Animal People, and the ongoing war between Raven and Coyote.

Someplace to be Flying starts out with a bang, but then slows down to introduce a large and varied cast of supporting characters and some mythology and backstory. Once the action starts up, though, it is almost impossible to put the book down. It draws you along as you get absorbed into Charles de Lint's vivid, detailed descriptions of his world.

While ... Read More

Moonlight and Vines: What is real?

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Moonlight and Vines by Charles de Lint

Moonlight and Vines is a well-written collection of stories, set in a modern city, intended to give the reader a sense of wonder, and make us believe that there is magic afoot, even in our most run-down urban slums.

Charles de Lint is wonderful at treading that line between fantasy and realism, where we wonder right along with the characters, "what is real?" That is his biggest talent; his biggest flaw is trying too hard to insert a moral into each of these stories. They all seem to be making a point. Sometimes this is annoying; sometimes the story is so good that I don't mind at all. The moralizing tends to place an artificial distance between the reader and the story.

My favorite story in the anthology is "Birds." It deals with two young women's search for peace of mind, and the rituals they use to find it.... Read More

Medicine Road: One of de Lint’s most inviting adventures

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Medicine Road by Charles de Lint

Some fantasists develop gritty, realistic alternate worlds that draw in the reader. Some swoop us away on flights of gorgeous prose. Some create detailed and intricate magical systems to delight the puzzle-lover and game-player in us. And some, like Charles de Lint, create with character, tone and authorial voice an experience that invites us into the story-telling circle, suggesting we pull up a chair next to the fire, grab a schooner of ale, and settle back to hear the story.

Medicine Road is one of de Lint’s most inviting adventures. Set in Arizona, the book follows what happens when desert magic meets the magic of the British Isles. Alice Corn Hair and Jim Changing Dog are under what some might call a curse, put on them by Coyote Woman. A century ago, Coyote Woman saw a red dog chasing a jackalope, and she ... Read More

The Blue Girl: I just don’t believe any of it

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The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint

What drew me to The Blue Girl wasn't the bad girl trying to be a good girl premise. It wasn't the thing about the resident student ghost or the gang of malicious fairies or being a social misfit. Been there, seen that — not just in books. It was the line about Imogene's imaginary friend manifesting into reality that piqued my interest. Now that was something I couldn't really recall seeing before. It tickled that whimsical part of me that my mom is so fond of talking about (and envying).

And there were some things about The Blue Girl that I liked, that I found fascinating. It's one of those books where it's a bit difficult to put into words exactly what it was I enjoyed; it's more a feeling than actual things that I can point out and explain.

But the problem I had with The Bl... Read More

Promises to Keep: Prequel to the Newford Stories

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Promises to Keep by Charles deLint

Promises to Keep is the story of the early Jilly Coppercorn, how she meets so many of the other central characters from the Newford stories, and the adventure that results when she unexpectedly bumps into Donna, a friend from her past who she had met while in the Home for Wayward Girls. Jilly used to be a victim of abuse, a junkie, and a hooker, but she’s changed her life, is clean, and is attending college and working. What change will this friend from her damaged past bring with her?

Promises to Keep is really a prequel to the Newford stories. While it does not necessarily assume a familiarity with the other stories set in this fictional city, the reader would benefit fr... Read More

Dingo: Recycled material

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Dingo by Charles de Lint

Dingo is a YA novel that tells the story of a young woman who has the ability to turn into a dingo because she is a descendant of the original animal people from the beginning of the world. Her breeding causes problems for her and her family when other animal people need her for a mysterious ritual. Fleeing Australia to Canada to find safety, Lainey meets Miguel and together they hatch a plan to win her freedom.

Charles de Lint is recycling previous material for this book. He has written multiple tales of a normal human who meets a mythic being, gets sucked into a dreamworld, and then has to work his or her way back home, and the repeat of this plotline left Dingo feeling stale and uninspired. There was nothing new or innovative in the way he handled this story, and even more disturbing was the way that the Au... Read More

Muse and Reverie: I wanted more

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Muse and Reverie by Charles de Lint

Muse and Reverie is a brand new collection of short stories set in Charles de Lint’s fictional city of Newford. Now available in one volume, these stories have been published in other venues over the last decade.  While there are some good stories, and only one real clunker, Muse and Reverie lacks the same magic that has characterized de Lint’s earlier collections.

I may have been at a disadvantage, because I have read several of these stories in other editions over the last year, so the bloom has faded from the rose, so to speak. Yet the characters that stood out to me in this volume were the old friends that I have read before: the irrepressible Crow Girls, Jilly and Goon, the mystical Meran, even the elf-like gemmin with their violet eyes. The new characters s... Read More

Cats

Cats — (2003-2013) Ages 9-12. A picture book with Charles Vess. Publisher: Lillian is an orphan who lives with her aunt on a homestead miles from anyone, surrounded by uncharted forest. She wanders the woods, chasing squirrels and rabbits and climbing trees. Free-spirited and independent Lillian is a kindred spirit to the many wild cats who gather around the ancient beech tree. One day, while she is under the beech, Lillian is bitten by a poisonous snake. The cats refuse to let her die, and use their magic to turn her into one of their own. How she becomes a girl again is a lyrical, original folktale. Set in the countryside north of de Lint’s fictional Newford, with some of the same characters as the duo’s recent, acclaimed Seven Wild Sisters, A Circle of Cats is the long-awaited first picture book by long-time friends Charles de Lint and Charles Vess, whose masterful art is as magical as the story. Illustrations by Charles Vess.

A Circle of Catsfantasy and science fiction book reviews

The Cats of Tanglewood Forest: A beautiful book to read with a child

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The Cats of Tanglewood Forest by Charles de Lint

From its charming dustcover to the muted two-page illustration at the end, The Cats of Tanglewood Forest is a beautiful book that I would love to read with, or to, a child. Charles de Lint and artist Charles Vess form a perfect collaboration here, with a wonderful, magical story for middle readers.

This novel is an expansion of de Lint’s novella, The Circle of Cats. De Lint uses as inspiration many of the Appalachian folk-tales, most prominently the strange old story about the King of the Cats, but stays close to his own roots, yarning about the old magic and new magic that imbues the American continent. Lillian is a little girl, an orphan, who lives with her aunt on a farm at the edge of the Tanglewood. Lillian plays in the woods; she scatters scratch for the wild birds after she’s fed the chickens... Read More

Jack of Kinrowan: Draws you in

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Jack of Kinrowan by Charles de Lint

Jack of Kinrowan is actually two books — Jack the Giant Killer and Drink Down the Moon — in an omnibus edition.

Jack the Giant Killer served as de Lint’s volume in the excellent Datlow and Windling edited series of modern retellings of classic fairy tales, as it retells the story of Jack and the Beanstalk, this time with Jack being a Jacky.

Set in Ottawa, Jack follows the adventures of Jacky Rowan, a young woman in her late teens who is stumbling through her own life and manages to fall into the faerie realm which inhabits t... Read More

Into the Green: What a strange little book!

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Into the Green by Charles de Lint

What a strange little book. That was the first thought that crossed my head after I closed Into the Green. It concerns the adventures of Angharad, a tinker-woman who is also 'Summerborn', which means that she has a mystical gift that connects her with the realm of Faerie, better known in this world as 'the Green'. Traveling the three islands that make up her Celtic-flavoured world, Angharad's mission in life is to awaken other potential Summerborns to their dormant gift and prevent the magic of the Green from leaking out of the world through her singing, storytelling and harping.

In the first surprise of the book, the heroine does not marry at the finale of the story but at its beginning — and just as abruptly her husband Garrow is taken from her by the plague. With her husband, family and community dead she is forced into a n... Read More

The Mystery of Grace: Different opinions

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The Mystery of Grace by Charles de Lint

The Mystery of Grace tells the story of Altagracia — known as Grace — Quintero, a tattooed, rockabilly mechanic who finds her greatest joy in customizing old cars and building hot rods, and John Burns, a graphic design artist. Both of these characters have unfinished business that they need to deal with before they can move on with their lives. But, they meet and fall in love two weeks too late for it to be a happy ending.

It’s difficult to give a good summary without giving away some fairly significant plot details, so let me just say that The Mystery of Grace is Charles de Lint at his finest. One of his strongest talents is the ability to write a world into existence, and for the length of this novel, you feel like you are walking the streets of Santo del Vado Viejo. You can hear it, smell... Read More

Eyes Like Leaves: A gifted writer’s beginnings

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Eyes Like Leaves by Charles de Lint

The magic is leaving the Green Isles. The Summerlord Hafarl’s staff has been broken, and the Everwinter is coming to blanket the islands in snow forever. To make matters worse, the Vikings are raiding up and down the shore, laying waste to everything in their way. It’s up to Puretongue, leader of the dhruides, to weld together the last scraps of the Summerlord’s power that can be found in the people to create a defense against Lothan, and bring summer and magic back to the isles.

Eyes Like Leaves is well-paced, and the action scenes flash with energy. Charles de Lint shows signs of the bardic gift in his ability to make scenes come alive, especially the chase scene with the direwolves pursuing the tinker caravan.

While the characters are interesting and detailed, and individual scenes are ... Read More

The Very Best of Charles de Lint: Truly Charles de Lint’s very best

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The Very Best of Charles de Lint by Charles de Lint

With a title like The Very Best of Charles de Lint, I had high hopes, and I have to say that they were met. Yes, this is the best of Charles de Lint’s fantasy. Chosen in consultation with his readers on Facebook and on his website, de Lint has culled down decades of writing to create a special volume with beautiful cover art by Charles Vess that highlights the reason why de Lint is considered one of the founding fathers of urban fantasy. I have been reading de Lint for close to two decades now, and am quite the completionist. I buy chapbooks and limited editions, and keep them in slip covers. With a background like that, I consider myself well qualified to judge if this is indeed the best of his writing. And, with the caveat that he is pulling from his short stories, because it’s difficult to ant... Read More

Jack in the Green: Disappointing

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Jack in the Green by Charles de Lint

Maria Martinez works as a maid in an upscale gated community. One day while she’s cleaning an upstairs bedroom, she glances out the window and notices a gang burglarizing the house next door. One of the gang members is a girl who used to be her best friend and another is a cute red-headed green-hoodied boy who catches Maria’s eye. Maria doesn’t call the police. Why should she? It’s not her house, they’re not her neighbors, and therefore it’s not her business. Later, when she runs into the burglars at the skating rink, Maria meets them and gets seduced into their world. It turns out that the gang has an admirable agenda — they steal from the rich and give to the poor. And they’ve got some magical help.

I love the Robin Hood legends and I love what I’ve read by Charles de Lint, so I should have really loved the novella Read More

Magazine Monday: Fantasy & Science Fiction, September/October 2011

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The September/October issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is always a feast: 258 pages packed with stories by some of the top talent in the field. It isn’t unusual for this issue each year to contain at least one story that will show up on the award ballots the following year, and that’s true this year as well. My nomination goes to Geoff Ryman’s “What We Found.” Ryman has been writing lately of third-world cultures, in such a way that the reader becomes immersed in the culture, surrounded by sights, scents, tastes and sounds of a world so foreign to a first-worlder that it might as well be an alien civilization. This time, the setting is Makurdi in central Nigeria, a city with air conditioning, solar panels, telephones with ebooks -- and roosters crowing outside the window on the morning of the narrator’s wedding day. As Patrick tells his story of his strange scientific findings and t... Read More

Magazine Monday: Fantasy & Science Fiction, March/April 2012

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The March/April issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is worth its cover price for the new Peter S. Beagle novelet all by itself. In “Olfert Dapper’s Day,” Beagle demonstrates that there are still new tales to tell about unicorns if you’re a master of the short fantasy tale. Dr. Olfert Dapper was a seventeenth century conman who wrote books about the strange creatures to be found all over the world, even though he never left Holland – that is, the actual historical figure never left Holland. In Beagle’s imagination, though, Dapper flees Utrecht just in time to avoid arrest, taking flight for the New World. He winds up in in No Popery, in the “vaguely delineated colony” of Maine. There, he is more or less forced to become the medical docto... Read More

Magazine Monday: Fantasy & Science Fiction, May/June 2012

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The best story in the May/June issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is the novella, “”Maze of Shadows” by Fred Chappell. And isn’t it lovely that a man who has won numerous literary prizes, is known for his poetry and essays, and was the poet laureate of North Carolina, is writing fantasy? And writing it beautifully, as well. The novella is one of his series about Falco, who is training to become a shadow master under the tutelage of Maestro Astolfo. A shadow master is one who works with shadows belonging to people and animals to create traps for the eyes, to harm and to help. The commission at issue in this story is one received from a baron, who wishes to have a chateau booby-trapped to protect his most precious possession. Falco does not know what this treasure is, but he creates a masterpiece of misdirection, one certain to lead any thief to his certain death. But a blind man easily def... Read More

Magazine Monday: Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August 2012

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The novella is the ideal length for a science fiction story. It’s long enough to allow a reader to become immersed in a scene and involved with the characters; and it’s short enough to allow a reader to suspend disbelief as to the more unscientific or strange aspects of a story without questioning them too closely. Kate Wilhelm’s “The Fullness of Time,” which forms the backbone of the July/August issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, is a fine illustration of the strengths of the novella form.

“The Fullness of Time” is about a documentary film maker, Cat, who hires a researcher, Mercedes, the first person narrator ... Read More

Magazine Monday: Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, November/December 2012

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The November/December 2012 issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is a mixed bag. Some of the fiction is excellent; some is not.

The best story in this issue is Naomi Kritzer’s “High Stakes,” a novelette that is a sequel to “Liberty’s Daughter” from the May/June 2012 issue (about which I said that I hoped there would be sequels). The setting for the story is a fictional, near future group of platforms and decommissioned cruise ships and other floating flat places in the middle of the Pacific Ocean that serve as home for several groups who found existing governments distasteful. The narrator, Rebecca, is a high-schooler whose father has a position of importance, though we never learn exactly what it is. We do know that he is highly invested in keeping things as they are on the seastead... Read More

Magazine Monday: Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, January/February 2013

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The latest issue of F&SF is stuffed with good reading. I can’t pick a favorite, as I often do; many of the stories hit that sweet spot. Robert Reed’s short story, “Among Us,” is a good example: it’s about the Neighbors, creatures who look exactly like humans but are not, though they may not know that themselves. The narrator studies the Neighbors in every way possible — almost. There comes a moment when he is not willing to let research take its course, and whether that proves something to him, to the researchers, or to the Neighbors themselves (or even all three at once) is not entirely clear. Reed's story is full of wonder, which is why he remains one of the best short story writers in the field.

“The Blue Celeb” by Desmond Warzel, another fine story, tells the tale of two men who opened a barbershop together in Harlem after they returned from Vietnam. They’ve watched the nei... Read More

Magazine Monday: Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, January/February 2014

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“In Her Eyes” by Seth Chambers is the novella in the January/February 2014 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, and it’s a doozy. It’s one of a number of stories and movies I’ve seen lately that address the question of what it is we love when we love someone. Do we love a mind? A body? Both together? Must they be unchanging? They can’t, really, can they, because we all age and grow; change is actually the only constant. And the question goes deeper, to the nature of the mind as an organic, chemical, electrical entity. Chambers examines all of these questions in a love story about a man and an unusual woman; I won’t say more so that you can discover her secrets for yourself (and she is very secretive).

There are five novelettes in this issue. The first is “The New Cambrian” by Andy Stewart, a science fiction tale about an expedition to Europa to study life beneath ... Read More

Snow White, Blood Red: A bit too much gross-out

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Snow White, Blood Red edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

Snow White, Blood Red was the first of Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling's adult fairy tale anthologies. The series later developed into a treasure trove of beauty, horror, humor, brightness, darkness, and above all, terrific writing. Here, though, many of the authors seem to have focused on the "adult" rather than on the "fairy tale," on sex and gore rather than on the archetypal power of the tales.

Most of the stories in this collection are filled with visceral, often nauseating, violence. There is also a lot of sex. Now, normally I don't mind sex in books. But this isn't erotic sex; it tends to be twisted, sadistic sex, often rape. The sexual content, rather than being erotic, feels like a further extension of the violence. There's a bit too much gross-out, a bit t... Read More

Black Heart, Ivory Bones: All that’s best of dark and bright

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Black Heart, Ivory Bones edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

Black Heart, Ivory Bones is the sixth and final entry in Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling’s series of fairy tale anthologies. Of the six, I’ve read four, and each has its own particular flavor, its own unique mood. While all of the books contain a mix of light and darkness, in this volume there seems to be more of a balance: “all that’s best of dark and bright,” if you will. The mood that Black Heart, Ivory Bones evoked in me was a wistfulness, maybe, or a pensiveness. When I first read the series, Black Thorn, White Rose was my favorite, but I’ve come to a deeper enjoyment of this volume as I’ve grown older. At this point I’d have to say the two are now tied in my mind.

My favorite stories in thi... Read More

The Green Man: Read it slowly

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The Green Man edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

In fairy tales, whenever someone journeys into the forest, you just know something strange is about to occur and that the protagonist’s life is going to be changed forever. The same is true of the stories and poems featured in The Green Man: Tales from the Mythic Forest. With this collection, editors Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling kicked off a series of young adult anthologies, each devoted to a particular theme. Here, the theme is wild nature, and most of the stories feature teenage characters who encounter the wilderness and undergo a coming-of-age experience there.

Of course, I have my favorites. Delia Sherman contributes a tale of the Faery Queen of Central Park, and the insec... Read More

The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales

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The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales is another thematic fantasy anthology by the trio of Ellen Datlow, Terri Windling, and Charles Vess. Coyote Road features twenty-six pieces of fiction and poetry. Each story is preceded by art by Vess and ends with a short bio and afterword from the author. In the Introduction, Windling gives us an extensive account of trickster tales around the world. The last few pages of the book consist of a Recommended Reading list of titles that tackle that subject as well.

Perhaps the best description I have for the stories here is that they're sophisticated and well-written. They're not easy reading and some have a slow pace, but they tend to leave a resonating emotion by the time you're d... Read More

Wings of Fire: I thought I didn’t like dragons

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Wings of Fire edited by Jonathan Strahan & Marianne S. Jablon

I don't like dragons.

This is probably not the first sentence you'd expect to find in a review of Wings of Fire, an anthology devoted exclusively to dragon stories, but I thought it best to get it out of the way right from the start.

There's nothing inherently wrong with dragons. They're just terribly overused, one of those tired genre mainstays that people who typically don't read a lot of fantasy will expect in a fantasy novel because they were practically unavoidable for a long time. To this day, I confess to having to suppress a mental groan whenever I encounter them.

For a long time, I actively avoided reading any fantasy novel with the word dragon in the title. Granted, I made several exceptions to this rule in the past, most notably The King's Drago... Read More

Sympathy for the Devil: A collection of bedtime stories

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Sympathy for the Devil edited by Tim Pratt

Please allow me to introduce Sympathy for the Devil, a fine new anthology filled entirely with short stories about the devil... who is, as we all know, a man of style and taste. However, you won’t just find the smooth-talking stealer of souls here. In addition to that famous version of His Grand Infernal Majesty, you’ll also find funny devils, monstrous devils, abstract devils and strangely realistic ones. Devils scary and not-so-scary, devils who are after children’s souls and others going after old men. Devils with a surprising amount of business acumen, and devils who try to get what they want, no matter the cost. There’s even one who engages in a competitive eating contest — the prize is, of course, someone’s soul.

Sympathy for the Devil, edited by Tim Pratt, of... Read More

Magic City: Recent Spells: A solid urban fantasy anthology

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Magic City: Recent Spells edited by Paula Guran

Things you should know:
1. This is a reprint anthology. If you read a lot of anthologies in the field, you will probably have read some of these before. I had read three, though two of them were among the best ones, and I enjoyed reading them again.
2. It still has some worthwhile stuff in it, especially if you're a fan of the big names in urban fantasy (Jim Butcher, Carrie Vaughn, Patricia Briggs) and haven't read these stories before.
3. It isn't just "urban fantasy" by the usual definition (our contemporary world plus the supernatural). There's a sword-and-sorcery story from Read More

Other books by Charles de Lint

Wildings — (2012-2014) Publisher: From one of the world’s leading fantasists comes an exhilarating new series that will thrill teen and adult readers alike. For the past six months, something has been happening to young people in Santa Feliz. Week after week, there’s news of another teen changing shape, transforming from human to wild animal and back again. The federal government has stepped in, running public service announcements calling for affected youth to turn themselves in for “orientation and training.” Josh Saunders has seen the news reports, but he is still unprepared when it happens to him. One minute he’s arguing with his mother’s boyfriend and the next, he is looming over the man, blood dripping from his claws — he has transformed into a mountain lion. When he switches back to his human body, he knows his life has changed forever. He has become a Wildling. Trusting only his best friends Des and Marina with his secret, Josh tries to return to regular living. But an encounter with Elzie, another Wildling, brings him unwanted attention from the authorities. And when an accidental betrayal reveals Josh’s secret, his carefully constructed cover is ripped apart, forcing his friends to intervene. They must grudgingly put their trust in others, including other Wildlings — and, most challenging, in each other —  if they ever hope to save him.

fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews


 

The Riddle of the WrenThe Riddle of the Wren — (1984) Publisher: Minda Sealy is afraid of her own nightmares. Then, one night, while asleep, she meets Jan, the Lord of the Moors, who has been imprisoned by Ildran the Dream-master — the same being who traps Minda. In exchange for her promise to free him, Jan gives Minda three tokens. She sets out, leaving the safety of her old life to begin a journey from world to world, both to save Jan and to solve “the riddle of the Wren” — which is the riddle of her very self. The Riddle of the Wren was Charles de Lint’s first novel.Mulengro


Mulengro — (1985) Publisher: A series of bizarre murders are baffling the police, each death somehow connected with the city’s elusive gypsy community. The police are searching for a human killer, but the romanies know better. They have a name for the darkness that hunts them down, one by one — “Mulengro”.


The Harp of the Grey Rosefantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews
The Harp of the Grey Rose — (1985) Publisher: He is the Songweaver, but before he was a master of song he was merely Cerin of Wran Cheaping — a seventeen-year-old orphan raised by a wildland witch. Then he encountered the Maid of the Grey Rose — the lone survivor of the war that devastated the Trembling Lands and the promised bride of Yarac Stone-Slayer, the feared and terrible Waster. The mysterious beauty captured Cerin’s heart, drawing him into a world both dark and deadly, until, armed with only a tinkerblade and the magic of song, he would take on a man’s challenge… and choose a treacherous path toward a magnificent destiny. The Harp of the Grey Rose is award-winning fantasist Charles de Lint’s first novel.


fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsYarrow — (1986) Publisher: Cat lived in a land of dreams, crossing over the borders of sleep into a magic realm where gnomes lived among standing stones and selchies beneath the waves, where antlered Mynfel walked by moonlight; and the harper Kothlen told stories of the ancient days.. When she woke from her travels she told her own stories about the Otherworld. Her publisher called her novels ‘fantasy’, but Mynfel’s domain seemed more real than the streets of Ottawa. until a thief came out of the night and stole away all her dreams.


Greenmantle Charled de LintGreenmantle — (1988) Publisher: Not far from the city there is an ancient wood, forgotten by the modern world, where Mystery walks in the moonlight. He wears the shape of a stag, or a goat, or a horned man wearing a cloak of leaves. He is summoned by the music of the pipes or a fire of bones on Midsummer’s Evening. He is chased by the hunt and shadowed by the wild girl.


Wolf MoonWolf Moon — (1988) Charles de Lint: His name when he was human was Kern. Now he is the most feared of beings: a werewolf. When the change first came upon him, his parents drove him away with silver daggers. Later, he sought human companionship, but he could not hide the truth for long. And so he kept running until he ran headlong into the deadliest pursuer of all — a harper bent on stealing his life away. By chance Kern was able to find refuge at the Inn of the Yellow Tinker, and the woman he was destined to love. But can he risk both human and harper vengeance to keep her?


SvahaSvaha — (1989) Publisher: Out beyond the Enclaves, in the desolation between the cities, an Indian flyer has been downed. A chip encoded with vital secrets is missing. Only Gahzee can venture forth to find it — walking the line between the Dreamtime and the Realtime, bringing his people’s ancient magic to bear on the poisoned world of tomorrow. Bringing hope, perhaps, for a new dawn.


Angel of DarknessAngel of Darkness — (1990) Publisher: In the early 1990s, Charles de Lint wrote and published three dark fantasies under the name “Samuel M. Key.” Now, beginning with Angel of Darkness, Orb presents them for the first time under de Lint’s own name. When ex-cop Jack Keller finds the mutilated body of a runaway girl in the ashes of a bizarre house fire, he opens the door to a nightmare. For a sadistic experiment in terror has unleashed a dark avenging angel forged from the agonies of countless dying victims…


The Little Country The Little Country — (1991) Publisher: Captivated by the unpublished manuscript she has found in her grandfather’s cottage, folk musician Janey Little is transported to the world described in the manuscript and into a tale of a bewitched young woman’s magical quest.The Wild Wood


The Wild Wood — (1994) Publisher: A young artist returns to her cabin in the deep woods of Canada to concentrate on her illustrations. But somehow, strange and beautiful creatures are slipping into her drawings and sketches. The world of Faerie is reaching out to her for help — and she may be its last chance for survival.


Triskell TalesTriskell Tales — (2000) A collection of stories. Charles de Lint: Every year at Christmas time I write a short story for MaryAnn that I publish in chapbook form through my Triskell Press imprint. I’ve been doing this for twenty-two years now; the earliest stories were printed in editions of only one copy. It wasn’t long before we decided to share the chapbooks as a Christmas gift for friends and family. In recent years, the stories have been reprinted in magazines, convention program books and my own short story collections — but their first breath of life has always been in chapbook form. Along the way, I’ve had a few small press publishers offer to do a limited edition collection of these stories, but the time never felt right until now. MaryAnn and I thought that it would be fun to celebrate the millennium with a hardcover edition of all the chapbook stories to date… Many of the earlier stories have never been reprinted. Some of the chapbooks also contained poetry that has seen very limited publication or none whatsoever. (One chapbook, about our first magical visit to the Tuscon area, was all poetry with a couple of transcribed fiddle tunes that I wrote.) We’re also including a few other items, such as a pair of short stories commissioned by our local community newspaper, one of which was a collaboration with MaryAnn. And to top it off, MaryAnn has agreed to provide a full-colour painting for the cover, along with several b&w interior illustrations.


Waifs and StraysWaifs and Strays — (2002) Young adult story collection. Publisher: Charles de Lint is a thirteen-time finalist for the World Fantasy Award, and eight of his books were chosen for the reader-selected Modern Library Top 100 Books of the Twentieth Century. His best-selling and award-winning work has always featured teenage characters. Here, at long last, is a collection of his stories about teenagers-a book for teen and adult alike. From the streets of his famed Newford to the alleys of Bordertown to the realms of Faerie, this is speculative fiction that will tranfix and delight, that will make readers think and feel and keep reading. Waifs and Strays is a must-own for de Lint fans, and an ideal introduction to his work for newcomers.


A Handful of CoppersA Handful of Coppers  — (2003) A story collection focusing on heroic fantasy. Publisher: This collection of early tales, some of them unpublished, is essential reading for fans of World Fantasy Award-winner de Lint (The Onion Girl). The six Aynber and Thorn yarns that open the volume (“Wizard’s Bounty,” etc.) are chock full of slashing swords, magic and evil sorcerers, but lack depth. The three set pieces about Colum mac Donal, an outlawed Irish berserker who becomes part of King Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table, exhibit more compassion and better plotting. The last and most compelling Colum piece, “The Fair in Emain Macha,” deals with his return to his family in Ireland and the subsequent “King-Breaking.” Somewhat atypical is “The Skin & Knife Game” (co-written with Lee Barwood), a fantasy-horror melange of creepy madness. All the stories are short and a bit light on the wordsmithing readers have come to expect from this master fantasist, but they are nonetheless fun to read and right on target for the sword-and-sorcery crowd. Quicksilver & Shadow


Quicksilver & Shadow — (2005) Charles de Lint: Quicksilver & Shadow is the second volume of my early short story collections. It focuses on the early contemporary, dark fantasy and science fiction stories, and it finally brings all of my Bordertown stories together in one place. The cover is done by MaryAnn Harris.


Triskell Tales 2 Triskell Tales 2 — (2006) A collection of stories. Charles de Lint: Every year at Christmas time I write a short story for MaryAnn that I publish in chapbook form through my Triskell Press imprint. I’ve been doing this for twenty-two years now; the earliest stories were printed in editions of only one copy. It wasn’t long before we decided to share the chapbooks as a Christmas gift for friends and family. In recent years, the stories have been reprinted in magazines, convention program books and my own short story collections — but their first breath of life has always been in chapbook form.What the Mouse Found


What the Mouse Found — (2008) A story collection for ages 9-12. Publisher: This special collection gathers for the first time a number of obscure and unpublished children’s stories by master storyteller Charles de Lint, each story featuring a brand new illustration.


Yellow DogYellow Dog — (2008) Charles de Lint: Yellow Dog was the Christmas chapbook from 2007. This a story which takes place in the American Southwest. It will be printed in two colors throughout, with a cover and several interior illustrations by me.


Charles de Lint The Painted Boy YAThe Painted Boy — (2010) Young adult. Publisher: Jay Li should be in Chicago, finishing high school and working at his family’s restaurant. Instead, as a born member of the Yellow Dragon Clan — part human, part dragon, like his grandmother — he is on a quest even he does not understand. His journey takes him to Santo del Vado Viejo in the Arizona desert, a town overrun by gangs, haunted by members of other animal clans, perfumed by delicious food, and set to the beat of Malo Malo, a barrio rock band whose female lead guitarist captures Jay’s heart. He must face a series of dangerous, otherworldly — and very human — challenges to become the man, and dragon, he is meant to be. This is Charles de Lint at his best!


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