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The Onion Girl
Synopses & Reviews
In novel after novel, and story after story, Charles de Lint has brought an entire imaginary North American city to vivid life. Newford: where magic lights dark streets; where myths walk clothed in modern shapes; where humans and older beings must work to keep the whole world turning.
He has peopled this city with extraordinary characters people like Joseph Crazy Dog, also known as Bones, the trickster who walks in two worlds at once; Sophie, born with magic in the blood, whose boyfriend dwells in the otherworld of dreams; Angel, who runs a center for street people and lives up to her name; Geordie, creating enchantment with his fiddle; Christy, collecting stories in the streets; the Crow Girls, wild and elusive; and many, many more.
At the center of these entwined lives stands a young artist named Jilly Coppercorn, whose paintings capture the hidden beings that dwell in Newford's shadows. Jilly has been a central part of the street scene since de Lint's very first stories. With her tangled hair, her paint-splattered jeans, a smile perpetually on her lips, she's darted in and out of the Newford tales. Now, at last, we have Jilly's own story, and it's a powerful one indeed...for behind the painter's fey charm there's a dark secret, and a past she's labored to forget. And that past is coming to claim her now, threatening all she loves.
"I'm the onion girl," Jilly Coppercorn says. "Pull back the layers of my life, and you won't find anything at the core. Just a broken child. A hollow girl." She's run from the past and the truth for so long. She's very, very good at running. But life has just forced Jilly to stop.
"De Lint is a master of the modern urban folktale." The Denver Post
"De Lint is a romantic; he believes in the great things, faith, hope, and charity (especially if love is included in that last), but he also believes in the power of magic or at least the magic of fiction to open our eyes to a larger world." Edmonton Journal
"In de Lint's capable hands, modern fantasy becomes something other than escapism. It becomes folk song, the stuff of urban myth." The Phoenix Gazette
"De Lint's novels are driven not so much by destinations as by journeys, and The Onion Girl is no exception....What makes de Lint's particular brand of fantasy so catchy is his attention to the ordinary. Like great writers of magic realism, he writes about people in the world we know, encountering magic as a part of that world. Fairy tales come true, and their magic affects realistic characters full of particular lusts and fears." Regina Schroeder, Booklist
"Continuing his series of novels set in a modern world that borders on a dimension of myth and legend, de Lint highlights the life of one of his most popular characters. A master storyteller, he blends Celtic, Native American, and other cultures into a seamless mythology that resonates with magic and truth. A good selection for most fantasy collections." Library Journal
"Another absorbing tale, as believable and insightful as they come, yet there's still an unsatisfying lack of weight — even the ancient spirits don't pack much of a wallop." Kirkus Reviews
In novel after novel, and story after story, Charles de Lint has brought an entire imaginary North American city to vivid life. Newford: where magic lights dark streets; where myths walk clothed in modern shapes; where a broad cast of extraordinary and affecting people work to keep the whole world turning.
At the center of all the entwined lives in Newford stands a young artist named Jilly Coppercorn, with her tangled hair, her paint-splattered jeans, a smile perpetually on her lips--Jilly, whose paintings capture the hidden beings that dwell in the city's shadows. Now, at last, de Lint tells Jilly's own story...for behind the painter's fey charm lies a dark secret and a past she's labored to forget. And that past is coming to claim her now.
"I'm the onion girl," Jilly Coppercorn says. "Pull back the layers of my life, and you won't find anything at the core. Just a broken child. A hollow girl." She's very, very good at running. But life has just forced Jilly to stop.
About the Author
Born in Holland in 1951, Charles de Lint grew up in Canada, with a few years off in Turkey, Lebanon, and Switzerland. Although his first novel was 1984's The Riddle of the Wren, it was with Moonheart, published later that same year, that de Lint made his mark, and established him at the forefront of "urban fantasy," modern fantasy storytelling set on contemporary city streets. Moonheart was set in and around "Newford," an imaginary modern North American city, and many of de Lint's subsequent novels have been set in Newford as well, with a growing cast of characters who weave their way in and out of the stories.
The Newford novels include Spirit Walk, Memory and Dream, Trader, Someplace To Be Flying, Forests of the Heart, and Spirits in the Wires. In addition, de Lint has published several collections of Newford short stories, including Moonlight and Vines, for which he won the World Fantasy Award. Among de Lint's many other novels are Mulengro, Jack the Giant-Killer, and The Little Country. Married since 1980 to his fellow musician MaryAnn Harris, Charles de Lint lives in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
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