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Magic for Beginners


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/ Lead title In this dazzling collection, prize-winning short story writer Kelly Link takes the ordinary and makes it strange -- and the strange and makes it ordinary. Engaging, funny, eerie and magical, these nine stories prove Link to be an original and important talent. / A delightful, peculiar and highly imaginative set of stories from prize-winning short story writer, Kelly Link. / Link's writing is championed in the US by major literary figures, from Jonathan Lethem and Michael Chabon to Karen Joy Fowler and Alice Sebold. / Link has won the 1999 World Fantasy Award, the 2001 Nebula Award and the 2005 Hugo and Locus Award. / The film rights to 'The Faery Handbag' have been optioned to David Kirschner Productions. / Link's writing has been published in publications such as 'McSweeny's Mammoth Treasury of Thrilling Tales' and 'The Best American Short Stories'. / Press review coverage guaranteed.

About the Author

Kelly Link's first collection of short stories, 'Stranger Things Happen' was a Salon Book of the Year. She is also the editor of the anthology 'Trampoline' and co-editor of 'The Year's Best Fantasy & Horror', as well as the magazine 'Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet'. She lives in Massachusetts, USA, where she runs a publishing company, the Small Beer Press.


The nine stories in Link's second collection are the spitting image of those in her acclaimed debut, Stranger Things Happen: effervescent blends of quirky humor and pathos that transform stock themes of genre fiction into the stuff of delicate lyrical fantasy. In "Stone Animals," a house's haunting takes the unusual form of hordes of rabbits that camp out nightly on the front lawn. This proves just one of several benign but inexplicable phenomena that begin to pull apart the family newly moved into the house as surely as a more sinister supernatural influence might. The title story beautifully captures the unpredictable potential of teenage lives through its account of a group of adolescent schoolfriends whose experiences subtly parallel events in a surreal TV fantasy series. Zombies serve as the focus for a young man's anxieties about his future in "Some Zombie Contingency Plans" and offer suggestive counterpoint to the lives of two convenience store clerks who serve them in "The Hortlak." Not only does Link find fresh perspectives from which to explore familiar premises, she also forges ingenious connections between disparate images and narrative approaches to suggest a convincing alternate logic that shapes the worlds of her highly original fantasies. (July 1) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Praise for Kelly Link: 'A new collection by Kelly Link -- and once more, for a little while, the world is worth saving.' Michael Chabon 'These stories will come alive, put on zoot suits and wrestle you to the ground.' Alice Sebold 'Dazzling, funny, scary and sexy, but only when they're not all of these at once. Kelly Link has strangeness, charm and spin to spare. Writers better than this don't happen.' Karen Joy Fowler 'The exact best and strangiest and funniest short story writer on earth.' Jonathan Lethem 'The most impressive writer of her generation.' Peter Straub 'Her stories have the vibrancy, the buzzing resonance and the oddly insistent quality of dreams.' New York Times 'Link's exquisite stories mix the aggravations and epiphanies of everyday life with the stuff that myths, dreams and nightmares are made of.' Salon

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