In novel after novel, Charles de Lint has brought an imaginary North American city to vivid life. Newford: where magic lights dark streets; where myths walk in modern shapes; where humans and older beings must work to keep the whole world turning. At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.
Life is truly an act of magic in Canadian author de Lint's triumphant return to Newford, his fictitious North American city, with its fascinating blend of urban faerie and dreamworld adventures. When Jilly Coppercorn becomes a victim of a hit-and-run driver, her happy life as a popular Newford artist comes to a screeching halt. Half of her body, including her painting hand, no longer works properly, and the prospect of a long recovery, despite supportive friends, depresses her. Her dreams - the only escape she enjoys - connect her to friend Sophie's dreamland of Mabon. Another friend, of otherworldly origin, Joe Crazy Dog, calls it manido-aki, a place where magic dwells amid mythic creatures and e-landscapes far away from the World As It Is. Joe also knows that's where Jilly must heal what has broken inside herself to speed recovery of her physical body. Complications ensue when her friends discover that someone broke into the artist's apartment after the accident and destroyed her famous faerie paintings. De Lint introduces yet another intriguing character, the raunchy, wild and furious Raylene, as dark as Jilly is light, who deepens the mystery. Is she Jilly's shadow self, or a connection to a past Jilly would rather forget This crazy-quilt fantasy moves from the outer to the inner world with amazing ease and should satisfy new and old fans of this prolific and gifted storyteller, whose ability to peel away layers of story could earn him the title "The Onion Man." (Nov. 1). Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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August 01, 2002
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Excerpt from The Onion Girl by Charles de Lint
Once upon a time...
That's how they always start, the old fairy tales that I read as a child. It's the proper place for them to start, because right away you know you're going to be taken somewhere else.
Once upon a time there was a little girl who wished she could be anywhere else in all the wide world except for where she was. Or more preferably still, she wished she could find some way to cross over into whatever worlds might lie beyond this one, those wonderful worlds that she read about in stories. She would tap at the back of closets and always look very carefully down rabbit holes. She would rub every old lamp that she came across and wish on any and everything...
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I've always been aware of the otherworld, of spirits that exist in that twilight place that lies in the corner of our eyes, of faerie and stranger things still that we spy only when we're not really paying attention to them, whispers and flickering shadows, here one moment, gone the instant we turn our heads for a closer look. But I couldn't always find them. And when I did, for a long time I thought they were only this excess of imagination that I carry around inside me, that somehow it was leaking out of me into the world.
In terms of what Professor Dapple calls consensual reality -- that the world is as it is because that's how we've all agreed it is -- I seem to carry this magical bubble world around with me, inside and hidden from the world we all inhabit. A strange and wonderful world where the implausible becomes not only possible, but probable. It doesn't matter if, most of the time, I'm the only one that can see it, though that's probably why I paint what I do; I'm trying to show the rest of the world this weird little corner of reality that I inhabit.