From the Publisher
“Vivid and amusing…Magically funny.” Ursula K. LeGuin, Los Angeles Times
“Captivating…an enticing introduction to Clarke's alternate universe.” People (4 stars, Critic's Choice)
“The prose is consistently flawless and beautiful. Reading Clarke is like inspecting some wonderful antiquated craft, such as marquetry or fine hand embroidery.” Washington Post
“Offers a rich, redoubtable vision…Lean, lovely, and witty.” Entertainment Weekly
“The writing is captivating, the characters charming, and the notion that perhaps there's more to reality than what our senses tell us is, as Clarke might say with a smile, simply enchanting.” Nancy Pearl, NPR
Fans of Clarke's bestselling Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrellshould be pleased with this book, as the stories collected here are very much cut from the same cloth. The stories (seven previously published and one original tale, "John Uskglass and the Cumbrian Charcoal Burner") deal with fairies and the history of English magic, and are told in the same Victorian style that made JS&MNso distinct. Prebble (who also narrated JS&MN) returns and once again triumphantly brings Clarke's richly imagined world to life. Sharing narrative duties this time around is Porter, who is equally skilled at playing prim and high-born ladies as she is using more folksy tones in "On Lickerish Hill." The footnotes that bogged down the audio edition of JS&MNare mostly absent, and the narrators' very different styles work well to give each story its own distinct feel. A lyrical and thoroughly enjoyable collection from a burgeoning master of fantasy literature. Simultaneous release with the Bloomsbury hardcover (Reviews, July 31). (Nov.)Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.