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Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Ivory and the Horn - Charles de Lint

The Ivory and the Horn is a collection of stories set in Newford, de Lint’s fictional Every City where many of his urban fantasy novels are based. The beauty of Newford is that there are so many shorter stories set there, and it’s easy to ease yourself into this world, and meet the many recurring characters through these tales.

De Lint’s stories run the gamut from completely fantasy-based, to skirting just along the edges of reality, and this anthology has everything along this scale. It’s hard to name favorites when there’s such variety to choose from, but highlights include:

“Mr. Truepenny’s Book Emporium and Gallery” Sophie lives a whole other life when she’s asleep in the city of Mabon. This story touches on the power of this world that she may or may not have created, and how she discovers that she’s not the only person to visit there.
“A Tempest in Her Eyes” An interesting meditation on Shakepeare’s Puck.
“Pal O’ Mine” An absolutely heartbreaking of those left behind by suicide.
“The Pochade Box” A lovely character portrait of Jilly Coppercorn, a painter who’s a regular character in the Newford stories.

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