Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The Line Between

Peter S. Beagle, probably best known for his classic fantasy novel The Last Unicorn, has an impressive body of work and collection of awards. He entitles this short story collection The Line Between in reference to the "invisible boundary between...reality and fantasy...where I have almost always lived." These eleven stories certainly straddle the boundary with a charm and an illogical sense that is uniquely his.

Here we meet Gordon the Self-Made Cat, who was born a mouse but had greater ambitions; Angie and Marvyn, who discover in themselves a talent for witchcraft; Henry Lee, who makes salt wine; Mr. Sigerson, better known by another name; an assortment of brief fables, and encore performances by previously written characters--Schmendrick the Magician and his troupe, Soukyan the wanderer and his fox-ish companion, and Jacob Sam and Emilia who shared a deathless (for a time) friendship.

If you like fantasy, and not everybody does, you could do worse than slip this book into a pocket and dip in when time permits. A glimpse into another reality can be refreshing.


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