Peter Beagle has long held a special place in my heart as the creator of The Last Unicorn. I mean a very special place. For years I had a stuffed unicorn that was the unicorn from The Last Unicorn for me. I've maintained my love for The Last Unicorn such that when I planned out my fantasy tattoo sleeve, Beagle's Unicorn and Red Bull both feature prominently.
Tattoo by Stina at Grim North Tattoo.
So, yeah. I'm a pretty big fan of The Last Unicorn.
When I found out that Beagle had released a new book, to say I was excited would be putting it mildly. I was ecstatic. Summerlong immediately skipped to the head of my to-be-read pile!
Summerlong is a much more subtle fantasy than The Last Unicorn. There are hints at magic and fantasy, but as outsiders looking in, we're not exactly sure if what we're seeing is really magic. The writing is subtle, sensitive, and heartfelt. The story is wonderful, revealing who the characters truly are as we move through the narrative; additionally, the cover is gorgeous.
This isn't high fantasy, so if you demand elves and dwarves and giants and ogres from your fiction, this won't be your cup of tea. But if a beautiful story that weaves in elements of Greek mythology sounds like fun, you'll love Summerlong. I know I do.