All tagged Magical Realism
She couldn’t change who she was, and she no longer wanted to, even if she could. She knew that who you are is a stone set deep inside you. You can spend all your life trying to dig that stone out, or you can build around it. Your choice.
In Sarah Addison Allen’s Garden Spells, Sydney Waverley came home to Bascom, North Carolina with her own stone embedded deep inside her. She escaped a dangerous relationship to return to her family and to her roots. She brought her daughter, Bay, to her family home where both relished a newly found security. Syndney Waverely begins building her world around her family’s heritage and the love of her life, Henry. Garden Spells wove this beautiful tale of the Waverley with sheer elegance.
The unexpected sequel, First Frost, picks up the story’s thread with the family settled and waiting for the first frost of fall and what it may bring.
The title itself of this collection of novellas and short stories, The Firefly Dance, evokes an image of a warm summer evening—beautiful and breezeless, fireflies flittering in the dusk like jewels against a velvet sky. And like that quintessential summer scene, this unique collection brought me smiles, magical wonderment and even a few tears.
In My Dreams by Sarah Addison Allen
Sarah Addison Allen’s In My Dreams was the first novella I read--and the reason I snagged this collection from the library. I had read all of her novels with the exception of this one, and I couldn't bear to skip this one. I dove into it expecting a luscious read. Luscious does begin to express the beauty of In My Dreams.
This lovely tale told in the voice of Louise about her, her mother, her great aunt Sophie and a rich array of characters including her dog Lazarus that she seemingly brought back from the dead.
I don’t know what I was expecting from The Year of the Beasts, but I definitely didn’t anticipate having my heart ripped out and stomped to bits in this slim, heart-wrenching novel-meets-comic.
Young adult novelist Cecil Castellucci and comic artist Nate Powell teamed up to create a fascinating story told in alternating chapters. Castellucci’s chapters are straight-forward narrative about the changing relationships between two sisters as they both navigate their first romantic relationships; Powell’s chapters are beautifully drawn comics of an alternate reality in which a girl with snakes for hair navigates a new school year.
Eventually the two storylines merge, and that’s when the heart ripping and stomping hit.
I can’t write a review of The Year of the Beasts without first discussing the format.
And the heart of the hero who wasn’t a hero felt both light and heavy.
Tiger Moon, Antonia Michaelis’s beautifully written tale of two intertwining stories of hope, despair, love and friendship glows as well with each turn of the page. The book is filled with mystical images laced with magical realism which guide the reader into a world of sacrifice and heroism.
Safia, the stunningly beautiful daughter of an impoverished high-caste father is sold to a wealthy beast of a man who covets both her virginity and her beauty—her beauty comes to the marriage intact, but not her virginity. Safia, the eighth wife, is no more to him than a lovely possession with an essential requirement of chastity. She knows that when her beastly betrothed consummates the marriage, he will learn the truth, which will result in her certain death.
Fortunately for Safia, her husband becomes ill and must wait to consummate his desire. She passes her days waiting for her death while spinning a tale for a young eunuch, a tale of Farhad who will surely save her. Time passes with fable and truth intertwining to create a dream-like world where truth and understanding transcend all obstacles
Some books etch themselves into my mind, become part of me, my experience, my emotions.
The ones that do that best are those that sneak up on me, ingraining themselves without my even realizing it. Antonia Michaelis’ The Storyteller is one of those—it didn’t seize me, it gently corralled me before I knew I was lost to its power.
Embroiled in the fairy-tale woven into reality with magical words giving beauty to a dark and haunting edged world, Michaelis’ writing lulled me like a melody until the harsh reality clambered to wake me to the sorrow, the pain behind the beauty of The Storyteller’s reality.
I love this book, which combines Shakespearean tragedy laced with the magical realism of Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
Editor’s Note: This is a special guest review from my mom. Sandra is a retired high school English teacher with a lot of opinions and a newfound love of YA literature and urban fantasy—she’s a longtime fan of horror, campy mysteries and police procedurals. As a kid, her goal was to grow up to be Nancy Drew, so much so that she carried around a notebook to report on her neighbors’ potenital criminal activities. We’re hoping that she’ll start every review like this one—with an f-bomb.
Evisceration is so fucking cool!
Kit and Fancy, the Cordelle sisters, take you through a portal into another world that’s bizarre and fascinating.
It’s a world where evisceration’s cool, where a crowd of gorgeous people born to carry their heads in their hands have star status, where imps pass from one person to another through kisses and buried bodies grow into trees sprouting the fruit of their inhumanity.
Portero, Kit and Fancy’s hometown, is a place unlike, yet like, those we know.