Review: The Very Best of Charles De Lint

CDLThis short story collection has literally CHANGED MY LIFE- and by that I mean I am not the same person I was before stumbling across it on Kindle Unlimited. Every single story- apart from a mere few which were a little too odd for me (like ‘Old Man Crow’)- is like a precious jewel- intricate, bold, colourful and multifaceted. I can barely put into words how gorgeous De Lint’s stories are, or the intersecting web of magical lives he weaves around the urban- unfortunately fictional- city of Newford. Crow girls, dryad folk musicians, time-bending trumpet players, and the wonderfully whimsical figure of the artist Jilly Coppercorn, her faerie friend Sophie and the waifs and strays she shows kindness to, all filled me with emotion, laughter and awe. Reading some stories on the train, I could feel tears pricking at my eyes- tears of recognition, for I realized that, through his writing, De Lint somehow gently stroked the ribbons of my soul. It’s so gratifyingly wonderful to know that, in some writing, imagination is venerated, and make-believe is made real on the turn of a page, or the flip of a coin. For once I felt my own vivid imagination was vindicated, and I saw a lot of myself in Jilly Coppercorn. Rarely do I have such a reaction to reading matter. All I can say is- read this collection, and read it NOW.

10 out of 10!

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