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To Weave a Web of Magic

To Weave a Web of Magic

4.0 4
by Claire Delacroix, Lynn Kurland, Patricia A. McKillip, Sharon Shinn

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A romantic fantasy anthology with four novellas from renowned authors of romance and fantasy...

USA Today best-selling author Claire Delacroix gives readers a revisionist version of the medieval legend of Melusine. USA Today best-selling author Lynn Kurland's trademark style shines in this tale of the magic and medieval romance between two


A romantic fantasy anthology with four novellas from renowned authors of romance and fantasy...

USA Today best-selling author Claire Delacroix gives readers a revisionist version of the medieval legend of Melusine. USA Today best-selling author Lynn Kurland's trademark style shines in this tale of the magic and medieval romance between two lovers.

World Fantasy Award-winner Patricia A. McKillip tells of an artist's model and the transforming power of beauty and inspiration.

National best-selling author Sharon Shinn offers a compelling romance set in a strange new off-world of angels and revolving around the pursuit of love.

The very thrill of love comes dazzlingly to life when these four shining stars or romance and fantasy weave their own web of magic for their legions of fans.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
For those who like an extra dose of romance with their fantasy comes To Weave a Web of Magic, an anthology that contains novellas by some of the biggest names in fantasy and romance: Patricia A. McKillip, Sharon Shinn, Claire Delacroix, and Lynn Kurland.

"The Gorgon in the Cupboard" is classic McKillip: a magic-filled fable about a struggling artist, desperate for inspiration, who finds his muse in the most unlikely of places. Inspired by a spirit in an unfinished painting, Harry sets off in search of a model for his masterwork and finds her practically on his doorstep in the form of an impoverished woman. Harry -- a superficial man through and through -- soon realizes firsthand the transcendent power of beauty.

Kurland's "The Tale of Two Swords" begins with eight-year-old Harold in search of adventure. Instead, he must settle for his father reading him and his siblings an old fairy tale by the fire. The story is about a young woman who runs away from her overbearing father and a prince whose kingdom has recently been destroyed by an evil sorcerer. As the story progresses, Harold suddenly realizes some striking similarities between the fairy tale's protagonists and his parents!

Shinn's "Fallen Angel" takes place in her much-traveled realm of Samaria and chronicles the tumultuous relationship between a young socialite named Eden and an unruly angel named Jesse. "An Elegy for Melusine" by Delacroix reinterprets a medieval fairy tale about a fool's wager between a mortal knight and a fey temptress.

Steeped in myth and magic, this enchanting anthology is highly recommended for readers who enjoy "and they lived happily ever after..." Paul Goat Allen

Four well-regarded women fantasy writers—Delacroix, Kurland, McKillip, Shinn—have written lengthy short stories about romantic fantasy for this anthology. Delacroix's cautionary tale about the shapes of love reveals the impact of perspectives. Kurland recounts a family epic of independent heroes and heroines. McKillip tells of an artist who activates a Gorgon to inspire him. Shinn reveals how angels can interact intensely with humans. As would be expected, the writing is professional, the plots well crafted. This anthology is a good way for readers to be introduced to these authors' styles. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2004, Penguin, Berkley, 362p., Ages 15 to adult.
—Dr. Lesley Farmer

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Edition description:
First Edition
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 8.00(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Lynn Kurland is the USA Today bestselling author of Stardust of Yesterday, A Dance Through Time, This Is All I Ask, The Very Thought of You, Another Chance to Dream, The More I See You, and If I Had You. She is also a contributor to The Christmas Cat, Christmas Spirits, Veils of Time, Opposites Attract, and A Knight’s Vow anthologies. A full-time writer, she lives in the Pacific Northwest.
Patricia A. McKillip is a winner of the World Fantasy Award, and the author of many fantasy novels, including The Riddlemaster of Hed trilogy, Stepping from the Shadows, and The Cygnet and the Firebird. She lives in Oregon.
Sharon Shinn is a journalist who works for a trade magazine. Her first novel, The Shapechanger's Wife, was selected by  Locus as the best first fantasy novel of 1995. She has won the William C. Crawford Award for Outstanding New Fantasy Writer, and was twice nominated for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. A graduate of Northwestern University, she has lived in the Midwest most of her life.

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To Weave a Web of Magic 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
erwhrw More than 1 year ago
Loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
PhoenixFalls More than 1 year ago
I picked the anthology up for the first story, Patricia McKillip's "The Gorgon in the Cupboard." It is a story about Harry, a struggling painter desperately in love with his mentor's beautiful wife, and Jo, a girl destitute and forsaken on the streets after several hard turns of fortune. The fantasy element comes into play when Harry pulls out a painting he never finished because his model disappeared and paints his mentor's wife's mouth onto it in a fit of despondency that he will never be able to create a work worthy of her; he is understandably shocked when the mouth comes to life and begins to speak to him. That is the only fantasy element obvious in the story; the setting is vague and paintings speaking are clearly not a common occurrance. The romance is also very slight. This is because what the story is really about is perception, the ways that we see what we want rather than what is. It's gossamer-light, yet far richer than it seems on the surface, wise and sensitive to the myriad ways life is fragile and bittersweet, particularly for women. The second story, Lynn Kurland's "The Tale of Two Swords," is the one I suspect romance readers will be happiest with, and it made me smile and roll my eyes in equal amounts (often at the same time). It features self-conscious modern fairy tale narration; the combination of hopelessly modern actions on the characters' part even as they speak in hopelessly archaic (and likely inaccurate) dialogue; and despite the fact that the man has just lost his family and his kingdom in an epic battle & the woman has a price on her head, and all they do is frolic in the forest getting muddy. However, despite all those things that irked me, I still couldn't help liking the characters and liking their romance, so I suppose Kurland did her job well. The third story, Sharon Shinn's "Fallen Angel," is the one romance readers will have the most trouble with. It's set ten years after the end of Archangel and Shinn assumes that the reader has enough background knowledge of her books that she doesn't need to explain the unusual way Samaria works. Unfortunately, this has led to some readers calling the story sacrilegious, because they have no context for this tale of angels behaving badly. Please keep in mind that the angels are nothing more than humans with wings -- they are NOT the angels of Christian mythology. Still, "Fallen Angel" just doesn't quite work as either fantasy or romance -- Shinn doesn't give enough grounding in the fantasy world-building to satisfy those fans, and the romance is decent (if of the "ooo, what a sexy bad boy" variety) only until the ending destroys suspension of disbelief with an out-of-left-field resolution that heaps all the evils in the world on one head. Still, I didn't hate the story, because it actually starts to address some of the thornier side of the world of Samaria -- the sort of chaos that can ensue when a ruling class with a free love worldview comes into conflict with a merchant class with very strict rules of propriety. The fourth story, Claire Delacroix's "An Elegy for Melusine," is a retelling of the Melusine myth. It hews very closely to the story as described on Wikipedia (I wasn't overly familiar with the myth, so I looked it up, lol) and is rendered in serviceable enough prose that the myth's full power shines through. It has a totally unnecessary framing story, unfortunately, but other tha
harstan More than 1 year ago
Patricia McKillip. Artist Harry Waterman feels like a failure because he lacks a muse to motivate him. That changes when Medusa calls him from a painting he drew. She plans to inspire him by pointing to a model Jo who vanished....................... Lynn Kurland. Using a cloaking spell, part Elfin Maher flees from her father because she refuses to wed her sire¿s choice of a spouse for her. Her father Robert wants to forge an alliance with Hagarth through his daughter. She refuses and seeks the help of King Harold to learn how to use a book of spells she possesses. However, her father insists she is a valuable asset to further his ambitions...................... Sharon Shinn. In Samaria, Jesse the fallen angel desires the young Manadavvi woman who returns his love. However, her mother insists her family is too important to have her marry a loser insisting the daughter will wed into a wealthy family or the next Archangel...................... Claire Delacroix. An elderly woman overhears two gossips discuss Melusine, a demon who chose to live in the mortal world to cast her evil influence on Raymond who she married and had ten children with him. The old woman informs the two women that Melusine came to this world out of love for Raymond. Is she a malevolent devil or a female in love?.................. All four well-written romantic fantasies contain solid lead characters though in a couple of the tales the antagonist pales in comparison. Sub-genre fans will appreciate the quartet as all fun to read.......................... Harriet Klausner