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Tillabooks: Will's Book Blog

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Triskell Tales 2 by Charles de Lint

Triskell Tales 2: Six More Years of Chapbooks by Charles de Lint. Burton, Michigan: Subterranean Press, 2006. ISBN: 1-59606-055-7

I haven't read Triskell Tales 1, but I suppose inevitably I'll have to someday, since it is my eventual goal to read all of Charles de Lint's published writing. These six stories, chapbooks as he calls, them, since that is how they were originally published, are apparently part of the author's Christmas tradition.

Some people paint. Some write carols (think Alfred Burt). Some make their own Christmas cards. But Charles is a writer, so he writes stories for Christmas cards. Here's what the author has to say about them in his intro:

I like these stories.

They start off as seasonal greetings, but go on, when reprinted, to reach a larger readership than those in my immediate circle of friends and family, and I like that, too. Firstly, because I don't like the idea of my stories remaining “exclusive,” or unavailable to my readers. But I also like the sense of the spirit of when these stories were written reaching out beyond the holiday season.

I tend to write from a positive outlook anyway, but these stories—considering how they were written as long “Christmas cards”—are more optomistic as a group than my other collections. I think there's room for such stories—obviously, or I wouldn't be writing them. I also think there's a need for them.

There's a lot more that de Lint says along these same lines, but you'll have to find the book and read the introduction for yourself, if you're interested. Only one of the stories actually has any direct connection with Christmas, the one titled, obviously, “A Crow Girls Christmas,” so these aren't like your traditional collections of Christmas stories.

No, they're just fantasy stories involving elves, fairies and sprites of various sorts, or other magical creatures or powers. All with more or less happy endings, or at least a general upbeat tone to them. Which isn't to say that the people in them don't have problems—they do, and often getting a start a solving those problems may be a good part of the story.

Definitely recommended for fans of Charles de Lint.

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