Moonlight and Vines: A Newford Collection
|Author:||Charles de Lint|
Familiar to Charles de Lint’s ever-growing audience as the setting of the novels Memory and Dream, Trader, and Someplace to Be Flying, Newford is the quintessential North American city, tough and streetwise on the surface and rich with hidden magic for those who can see.
Now de Lint (“one of the world’s leading fantasists”—Toronto Star) returns to this extraordinary city for a third volume of stories set there, including many never before published in book form. Here is enchantment under a streetlamp: the landscape of urban North America as only Charles de Lint can show it.
Imagine a city—cold, hard, concrete jungle on the surface, but, down that dark alley or disused cemetery, magic has begun to unravel the gray fabric of realism. Charles de Lint succumbs to his fascination with the outsider in all of us, and writes of lonesome goth kids, newbie lesbians, strippers, Gypsies, angels of death and mercy, and even vampires and ghosts in a style that is remarkably refreshing after so much sword-and-bodice formula fantasy. Moonlight and Vines is a medley of fairy tales for the alternative crowd, with most of his city grrrls and boys sporting combat boots and wounded souls. De Lint crafts his stories with soft edges but indelible images:
I can feel a foreign vibe in my apartment, a quivering in the air from Teresa having been there…. My furniture, the posters and prints on my walls, my knickknacks, all seemed subtly changed, a little stiff from the awareness of her looking at them. It takes a while for the room to settle down into its familiar habits. The fridge muttering to itself in the kitchen. The pictures in their frames letting out their stomachs and hanging slightly askew once more.
Hardcore horror/fantasy enthusiasts might find the author’s habit of imbuing each protagonist with a sense of wonder and self-discovery slightly saccharine and hackneyed after the umpteenth happy ending, but longtime de Lint fans will be delighted. —Jhana Bach