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Jack, the Giant Killer by Charles de Lint

Jack, the Giant Killer (1987)

by Charles de Lint

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Jack of Kinrowan (1)

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I really liked the opening chapter of this book. De Lint creates a wonderful picture of Jacky Rowan. Recently dumped for being too uninteresting she has spent the night drinking her sorrows away. But on her way home she comes across a strange scene; a gang of bikers hunting down a little man. But when she investigates further there is no trace of it ever having happened, apart from the man’s red cap that she discovered on the ground.

This red cap is more than a head covering it. When she wears it Jacky discovers that she can see into a different world. The world of faerie, where hobgoblins and bogans live. Where the Wild Hunt are at the eck and call of the unseelie court and the seelie court are almost gone.

As I said, I really enjoyed the opening chapter of this. It was really well written and totally captured the character of Jacky. But for the most part the rest of this book seemed to move too quickly. All of a sudden Jacky is part of this other world. And suddenly she’s a hero. Part of the reason for this is probably the fact that the book is a version of a fairy tale, where Jack, all of a sudden, finds himself with a magic beanstalk and a giant to do battle with. But I prefer a little bit more development in my books. Everything seemed to happen in great leaps forward. There was very little development here.

Still, it was an entertaining enough read. Even when de Lint isn’t on the top of his game he is still very readable. It is a fun, easy to read book. But not one I’d really see myself rereading. ( )
  Fence | Mar 10, 2010 |
This was the second Charles De Lint book I ever read and it remains one of my favorites and that made me a fan of the author.

I like the sense of fun it has, the easy blending of the modern world and fantasy and even the fact that it was short. A lot of his books as he keeps on writing start to get longer and longer and feeling a bit dragged out. This one was just as long as it needed to be. ( )
  Kellswitch | Jun 12, 2009 |
Jack, The Giant-Killer by Charles De Lint uses just a tad of the old Jack myth (well, it uses the name and the giant killing...) and lots of faeries in the cities, much like in Emma Bull's War for the Oaks. Like the last book it was interesting, but not all that exciting. ( )
  the1butterfly | Oct 14, 2006 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Charles de Lintprimary authorall editionscalculated
Canty, ThomasCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Book description
In his eighth fantasy novel, the author of Moonheart and Yarrow turns the stories of "Jack the Giant Killer" and "Jack and the Bean Stalk" into a contemporary tale set in Ottawa. Jacky Rowan's boyfriend of three months has just dumped her because she has begun to bore him. Feeling empty, confused and rejected, Jacky meets Dunrobin Finn, a gnome who introduces her to a parallel reality, Faerie, which she can see and enter into by wearing a magic red cap. Having recently witnessed the murder of a gnome by evil bikers, Jacky's meeting with Finn inspires her with the renewed vitality to embark upon a quest to save the daughter of a Laird of Kinrowan, who is being held in a Giant's Keep. Jacky's best friend, Kate Hazel, agrees (at first skeptically) to help her. The pair flee and tackle all manner of bikers and "bogans" (evil entities that look like winos in non-Faerie reality), and Jacky finds a replacement for her wayward love in Eilian, the hunkish son of a Laird of Dunlogan. Unfortunately, de Lint gives more weight to fantasy arcana than to more accessible universals, undercutting the potential "cross-over" appeal of this otherwise readable tale.
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