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Dreams Underfoot: The Newford Collection by…

Dreams Underfoot: The Newford Collection (1993)

by Charles de Lint

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1,488234,992 (4.15)63
  1. 30
    Memory and Dream by Charles de Lint (Kerian)
    Kerian: Memory and Dream takes place before Dreams Underfoot. A difference is that it's a novel versus a collection of short stories. If you wish to continue with short stories in this series, The Ivory and the Horn is the next short story collection.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 23 (next | show all)
I only made it about a third of the way through Dreams Underfoot. It wasn't bad, but I just didn't get into it. The writing was good and lyrical and the stories were well-constructed. The world Charles de Lint creates is unique and creative and he draws interesting characters. But I wasn't captivated by it, and when I wasn't reading I didn't feel particularly drawn to pick it up again. I think part of the issue may be that I am just not a short story person. I like novels that I can get completely lost in. With short stories, just when I'm starting to feel connected to the characters, it's over. Additionally, I didn't find much I could relate to in the world de Lint created, and I began to get a little tired of the characters all being of the urban bohemian sort, which is very different from my own experience of life. So all in all, I decided not to continue reading it. However, I know many people love Charles de Lint, so I can't really say that I do or do not recommend Dreams Underfoot. It just wasn't for me. ( )
  sbsolter | Feb 6, 2014 |
Great fantasy mixed with the seedy side of life, interconnected with some of the same characters throughout. Totally enjoyed. ( )
  tloeffler | Oct 19, 2013 |
A bunch of short stories that might be a bunch of stories and might sort of be a novel, depending on how many you read. I recommend that you try at least a few, if you are at all interested in fairy tales, urban legends, or just getting by in the world. The retelling of "The Little Mermaid" is the best take on the story I've ever come across.
  louistb | Jun 29, 2013 |
I'm not a fan of short stories, which makes the short story books that I like all the more overwhelming to me. I've bought and loaned away so many copies of this book I can't keep track of them all. Just sitting down to write this review has me feeling a parrot's beak pressing out from behind my sternum... completely haunting. ( )
  Capnrandm | Apr 15, 2013 |
"Every time it rains a ghost comes walking."

Dreams Underfoot introduced readers to de Lint's fictional city of Newford. Magic is on the streets of Newford if you just know where to look for it. It's usually in the most unexpected places.

Man, I love the Newford books. This book started my re-read of them all in order. They aren't really a series, so I've skipped around, reading them as I find them, but I'm curious to see my favorite characters grow in a more natural progression.

I really don't remember what order I read these in initially, but this was definitely one of the first. There are some true gems in here.

I'm going to pull most of this review straight from my status updates.

Uncle Dobbin's Parrot Fair--"Jilly, Christy, Professor Dapple, Goon, and even a crow (not a Crow Girl, mind you, but a crow nevertheless)--I don't love this first story but de Lint laid one hell of a foundation for Newford here."

The Stone Drum--"Liked Stone Drum, although it reminded me how curious I am about the Kelledys. I wonder if there is a book about them that I haven't read yet? Would be nice to know their backstory in full. And Goon's a skookin. I've been thinking of him as a goblin because I couldn't remember the right name."

Timeskip--"Starting Timeskip! I remember it as my favorite of de Lint's stories. I hope it holds up. With an opening sentence of "Every time it rains a ghost comes walking," it is off to the perfect start....Such a perfect, bittersweet story. So important to "Geordie, me lad"'s story arc. Love. It."

"Freewheeling is too sad for me. I probably shouldn't see it that way but I do."

That Explains Poland--"A fun yet thoughtful story. It is better to keep the magic of some experiences to yourself."

"Romano Drum--The Romany story was nothing new."

"The Sacred Fire was super-creepy! I'm regretting reading it before bed! It is interesting how the idea behind this story fully manifested itself in The Onion Girl."

"Winter Was Hard is another of my favorite stories. I love the gemmin. It's another bittersweet story, but when I finished, I had to just sit there for a few minutes and enjoy what it made me feel."

And I stopped my updates there. I'll do what I can from memory now.

Pity the Monsters--Verrry creepy. These two are definitely a pair of monsters. Yet I did pity one of them at least. The more monstrous one. Makes you wonder who the real monster is.

Ghosts of Wind and Shadow--More of the Kelledys! I really had forgotten how much I like them. The dangers of putting children in convenient "boxes" and refusing to see the magic in the world. More about the magic found in music.

The Conjure Man--I love the idea behind this one. A tree that grows as people share their stories with it.

Small Deaths--I don't remember this one as well. It's not a standout by any means. It's something about the light inside us and how the choices we make can lead to "small deaths." You know, those choices that we all make that start us down the wrong path.

The Moon is Drowning While I Sleep--Another old favorite! I love Sophie and her alternate reality. This one has a very classic fairy tale feel.

In the House of My Enemy--A difficult story about child abuse. Gives some big insight into the histories of some favorite characters.

But For the Grace Go I--I like Margaret and Tommy and their pack of dogs. A reminder that we can always choose to turn our life around.

Bridges--I don't like this one much either. It's a little dark, but ultimately it is about hope.

Our Lady of the Harbor--Basically a modern re-telling of The Little Mermaid.

Paperjack--Gives some closure to "Timeskip." Paperjack himself reminds me of John Coffey from The Green Mile.

Tallulah--Christy's first real story. No wonder I always think of him as being melancholy. About the way the very nature of a city can change with its people.

This collection is just a fantastic introduction to Newford. It reminded me why I fell in love with these books in the first place. ( )
  JG_IntrovertedReader | Apr 3, 2013 |
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Tread softly because you tread on my dreams. --W.B.Yeats, from "He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven"
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She would see them in the twilight when the wind was right, roly-poly shapes propelled by ocean breezes, turning end-over-end along the beach or down the alley behind her house like errant beach balls granted a moment's freedom.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765306794, Paperback)

Welcome to Newford. . . .

Welcome to the music clubs, the waterfront, the alleyways where ancient myths and magic spill into the modern world. Come meet Jilly, painting wonders in the rough city streets; and Geordie, playing fiddle while he dreams of a ghost; and the Angel of Grasso Street gathering the fey and the wild and the poor and the lost. Gemmins live in abandoned cars and skells traverse the tunnels below, while mermaids swim in the grey harbor waters and fill the cold night with their song.

Like Mark Helprin's A Winter's Tale and John Crowley's Little, Big, Dreams Underfoot is a must-read book not only for fans of urban fantasy but for all who seek magic in everyday life.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:31:04 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Like John Crowley's Little, Big and Mark Helprin's A Winter's Tale, Dreams Underfoot is a Must Read book not only for fans of urban fantasy but for all who seek magic in everyday life.

» see all 2 descriptions

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