Monday, November 27, 2017

In Calabria, by Peter S. Beagle

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(Modern Fantasy) Claudio tends his farm alone down at the tip of the Italian peninsula until a young woman and a pregnant unicorn disturb his tranquility. (31,954 words; Time: 1h:46m)

Rating: ★★★★★ Beautiful, Charming, and Uplifting

There is no connection with the Last Unicorn stories.

"In Calabria," by , published on by .

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Pro: Essentially this is the story of how Bianchi found someone to love again. This alone makes it moving and powerful, but the strong characters of Bianchi and Giovanna make the result much more effective. We really love both of them, and we’re happy for them at the end.

Bianchi’s wonderful animals add both charm and tension, because we’re sure the ‘Ndrangheta are going to hurt them.

The public reaction to the unicorns is sufficiently over-the-top to add a welcome element of humor right before the story gets deadly serious.

There’s all sorts of symbolism here, if you want to look for it. E.g. with the birth of the colt, Bianchi himself is born again, in that he engages with life again after his long, lonely period following the death of his child and loss of his first wife.

Con: The ‘Ndrangheta are cardboard villains. It’s never clear what they really want to do with a unicorn.

Other Reviews: Search Web, GoodReads.com
Peter S. Beagle Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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1 comment (may contain spoilers):

  1. Oh, this was really beautiful. On to my Hugo ballot it goes!

    ReplyDelete