Category Archives: peter beagle

High Fantasy Meets the 1960s

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High Fantasy Meets the 1960s

Told in the perspective of the last unicorn left on earth, Beagle introduces us to characters that are all looking for something, whether they know it or not. The unicorn is looking for her kin, the magician is looking for real magic and a way to change his fate, and Molly Grue is looking for some magic herself. Battling many obstacles on the journey, Molly, Schmendrick the magician, and the unicorn, who is later turned into the Lady Amalthea by Schmendrick, have to face their biggest obstacle in the form of the Red Bull. To me, the Red Bull was more than just a representative of fear but of ones own desires and how they can hinder and trap us where we are. It’s not enough to just desire something to make it real. Desire and happiness involve sacrifice and pain. Now I won’t go all literary on you guys but this book was an English major’s dream. There is so much in it that is up to interpretation. So much to think about and debate over. On the surface The Last Unicorn appears to be a simple fairy tale but it develops into a conversation about life, hope, and redemption.

If you read the last post you know I had high hopes for this book before I even opened the cover and let me say it definitely lived up to those expectations. The Last Unicorn is a wonderful and hilarious pastiche of 1960s culture, Grimm’s fairy tales, with a splash of Monty Python for flavor. Beagle transports you right into this world of magic, unicorns, princes, and princesses but diverts the genre by giving animals and humans alike real voices from his own time. The butterfly in the first few scenes is hilarious and reminds me of your typical 1960s flower child. It’s almost like watching an episode of The Mod Squad as told by a butterfly to a unicorn.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves a good story and a little humor. It is so much more than a fantasy story about a unicorn.

Final rating: 5/5

Stay tuned of the next installment in Book Battle 2015.

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The Last Unicorn

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The Last Unicorn

I cannot even express how exited I am to start reading this book, especially since I didn’t even know it was a book. I grew up watching the movie The Last Unicorn and was absolutely enraptured by it. The Last Unicorn and The Little Mermaid define my childhood movie watching experience. I must have watched this movie at least 100 times as a kid both terrified and mesmerized by it. The image that still sticks in my mind to this day is of The Red Bull chasing down the unicorn. It was terrifying and exhilarating all at the same time. The red flames from the bull that filled the screen always kept me on the edge of my seat wondering if maybe this time the unicorn wouldn’t escape.

Now I won’t lie, my memory fails me on the major plots of the story only focusing on the parts that used to scare the bejesus out of me which is in part why I’m so excited to read the book. I want to remember the story. I want to be transported back into a storyline I loved so much. Plus the old VHS tape is so worn out it doesn’t play as well anymore.

Since I did love this movie so much as a kid I do have high expectations for this book. Fingers crossed it’s as good as I remember the movie being.

Here’s to some high fantasy and, for those of you who want to know the category for this book battle, a book centering around a non-human protagonist. Happy reading!