Since March of 2014, at the rate of one book a month, I've been working my way through the works of Canadian fantasy author Charles de Lint. Beginning with stories clearly set in a high fantasy realm, over the course of his works he has moved his settings to a fictional Canadian city called Newford, which also happens to be the setting of his first short story collection, Dreams Underfoot (1993).
To be fair, the book could have easily been titled, Dreams Underfoot: The Jilly Coppercorn stories, as his artist character Jilly appears as a main or secondary character in about three quarters of the collection. But as Jilly is an open minded woman, trying to see the magic in all things, I was quite happy to have her along for the collection.
The stories move from funny to heartbreaking and back again, some of them include very graphic imagery, but each of them feels very human to me, focusing (as de Lint often does) on how people react when exposed to the otherworldly. A fascinating introduction to his style of Urban fantasy, and a great place for newcomers to his fiction to begin.
1 month ago