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Dreams Underfoot (Newford #1)

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  7,021 Ratings  ·  355 Reviews
I have spread my dreams under your feet: tread softly, for you tread upon my dreams... So said Irish poet William Butler Yeats, and so Charles de Lint has done. He has spread before us the wondrous fabric of his dreams in this tour de force of modern urban fantasy. De Lint, today's leading writer of urban magical tales, has created the imaginary city of Newford and peopled ...more
ebook, 209 pages
Published (first published April 1st 1993)
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Jan 09, 2010 Irene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Copied from the author's website, I thought this would be a handy guide for myself (since I lost track of which ones I've read and who knows in what order). * for the ones I have/read.

Q. Where do I start reading the Newford stories?
A. The books have all been written in such a way that you should be able to pick up any one and get a full and complete story. However, characters do reoccur, off center stage as it were, and their stories do follow a sequence. The best place to start is the collectio
I was just a wee freshman in high school when I discovered Charles de Lint, and my addiction to his characters and fictional world of urban mythology all started with this book. It has been 14 years now and I'm still a huge fan.

The first edition paperback of this book actually has an oil painting by Terri Windling on the cover of a celtic looking woman with deer horns, a flute, and an oak leaf tattoo over her eye. I want to say John Jude Palencar has been doing the reprint cover art as these ant
Mar 21, 2008 Werner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of urban ffantasy
Note, Nov. 26, 2015: I edited this review just now to correct a misspelled word.

All but one of the 19 stories in this collection take place in de Lint's favorite setting, his imaginary city of Newford, Canada and its environs, and they furnish a great introduction to his characteristic urban fantasy. (Strictly speaking, two of the stories here don't actually have a supernatural element; but they fit right in with the rest.) Newford is home to such creatures as mermaids and fairies, skookins and
3.5 stars. I liked this collection and certainly would recommend it to fans of de Lint but in all honesty I was expecting to like this collection more than I actually did. I had previously read Moonheart (which I loved) and Memory and Dream (which I thought was excellent, though not quite as good as Moonheart).

First, this is not really a short story collection as much as a group of individual tales all set in Newford and involving many of the same characters (and often building on events that o
Arielle Walker
Absolutely stunning. I'm still somewhat mesmerised by this book, under its spell, having a hard time not picking it straight back up and reading it again (and only stopped from doing so because I lent it to someone else with the insistence that they read it immediately).

This book doesn't really fit neatly into "genre". It's not quite a novel, but then not quite short stories either. Short stories, I suppose, in the sense that each "chapter" can be read independently of any other, and in fact wer
Michael Havens
May 06, 2008 Michael Havens rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who love Urban Fantasy and Myth
Charles de Lint seems to do what many New York Times Bestselling authors fail to do; he is able to tell simple (Note: I do not mean simplistic) stories, and keep the “meat and potatoes” in place. What do I mean? There is nothing more irritating to me than a story which is more a sketch than a story, where characters are given the thinnest of descriptive lines, where the plot is as thinly unveiled as the characters, are given to long dialogs that meander in order to get that extra pages in so th ...more
*~Lan Lan~*

I reviewed each short story as a read so here are my status updates with corresponding stars/reviews:

I give Uncle Dobbin's Parrot Fair a 4.5 star rating. It was a simple tale but I loved it!

The Stone Drum gets 5 stars! Absolutely amazing tale and introduction for characters I have learned to love in his later works.

Timeskip gets a solid 5 stars. the way it ended have me so many unexpected feels.

I'm going to give Freewheeling 4 stars. it was sad but a very simple but beautiful short stor
Althea Ann
A collection of short stories that actually works very well as a 'novel.' They all share a setting and theme - that of troubled, often creative young people encountering myth and magic in the imaginary city of Newford. Having never been to either city, for some reason Newford conjures up a sort of cross between the Seattle and Vancouver of my mind.

Some of these stories are very, very good. I'd say some of them are some of de Lint's best work.

However, around the second half of the book, it began
Sep 03, 2010 Juliet rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Charles de Lint was writing urban fantasy well before the genre's current wave of popularity. In fact, his work sits outside what people mean by urban fantasy these days - it eludes classification, falling somewhere between magic realism and folkloric fantasy. Terri Windling's introduction to this edition discusses the difficulty of trying to pin such a book down to a single genre.

I'm currently attempting to read through all Charles de Lint's Newford books in order of publication. Dreams Underfo
This collection of short stories was the first of Charles de Lint's Newford books that I read 20 years ago. I might not rate it quite as high now (perhaps a 4), but at the time - it was immersive and amazing and I could almost (not quite!) see hints of the magical from the corner of my eye after I finished reading. I was happy to discover that de Lint's Newford tales have retained their own immersive magic all these years later.
Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship
This is an enjoyable collection of 19 linked short stories, of the sort of urban fantasy that mixes the ethereal and mundane. Just right for nighttime reading.

De Lint is a prolific Canadian author who has written many books set in the fictional city of Newford, of which this is the first; most of the stories were originally published in magazines in the late 80s and early 90s. They tend to feature bohemian types – artists, writers, musicians – and street people, encountering magic beneath the su
Short stories, I have decided, are simply not my favorite medium. They don't offer up enough satisfaction or closure, and there's that obscurely frustrating first couple pages of a story when you don't know what is going on, and that happens over and over again. Thankfully all the stories in this case take place in one area, the city of Newford, with a cast of characters that show up repeatedly. Jilly is a great character and I can't wait to see her again, as well as Geordie the fiddle player.

May 30, 2013 Simone rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Review initially published on my blog, Writing by Numbers, here.

It’s uncomfortable and a little odd to admit that this collection of short stories mostly made me think I wouldn’t de Lint very much. Though the stories are fiction, I couldn’t shake the feeling that he was a smarmy liberal white guy persuading me of his sensitivity, his hipness. That he considers himself an appealing blend of Peter-Pannish proponent of imagination, and storyteller with his finger on the pulse of gritty urbanity. P
Apr 29, 2009 Kerry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks, 9, fantasy, 2009
I've been familiar with the name of author Charles de Lint for a number of years, but I've never really got around to reading his books. I read Moonheart many years ago and remember being very impressed with it (to the point I bought the audiobook from Audible last year and hope to get to listen to it this year), but I never read anything else.

de Lint writes urban fantasy. Somehow, in the years between the late 80s/early 90s when people like de Lint and Emma Bull and were writing it and now, th
Li Seagull
Thoroughly unimpressed.

Maybe this wasn't a Lint book I should've started with. Or something. I guess it just didn't work out for me. Anthologies, unless really compelling, don't roll with me in the first place, and this just...didn't. At all. The stories were really discombobulated and disorganized and I mean you could've arranged them throughout the book in whatever order you wanted but why did you choose this order?!

...ugh. I dunno, guys.
Mar 06, 2010 Jammies rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good reviews are always harder for me to write than bad ones. This book just sings to me--I love the sparse, clean prose; the engaging, three-dimensional characters; the twisted but familiar storylines and the city of Newford. I love that de Lint sets his urban fantasies in a Canadian city, which is a welcome change from the UScentric urban fantasy I usually read. I was sad to close the book after reading the next page, and I want more.

Dreams Underfoot is the first book in the long running Newford series by Charles de Lint; a man partially responsible for the genres Urban Fantasy and Mythic Fiction. Along with a few peers de Lint’s work launched the concept of fantasy elements merged with contemporary time periods and modern settings. Without his influence many of the popular series of today simply would not exist.

I have been errant in reading him until now. Which makes me a bad fantasy fan, especially because I really enjoyed
This is another one of those books where I just have to say 'How does one review something this special, this odd and this wonderful?' I can't. I can, though, try and tell you why I love this anthology so much.

It's the second of de Lint's works that I have read. The first was The Blue Girl, which, when I started it, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. This anthology really connected some dots about Newford for me, though.

The characters in here are just magical in that they are totally
Chris McGrath
Jul 22, 2012 Chris McGrath rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
The idea of this book is more interesting than the execution, for me. It's a short story collection, each story having some aspect of magical realism to it, and the main character from one story will be an ancillary character in another. Of course this does not result in anything even mildly resembling a novel and there is no ongoing story, just a lot of strange happenings centered on a fictional city.

Thankfully none of the stories were bad, but most were not particularly interesting to me eith
Jessie McMains
Apr 07, 2013 Jessie McMains rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm giving this four stars because I would give it three stars for the writing, and five for how much I loved it. That doesn't make much sense, let me explain: the writing was a little overwrought with metaphor and simile, and there were certainly some problematic elements to some of the stories...but the stories themselves pulled me along. Like magic.
Jun 15, 2013 Jefferson rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Terri Windling's Introduction to Charles de Lint's Dreams Underfoot (1993) accurately describes the “urban magic” infusing the collection of nineteen short stories as using “the tools of myth, folklore and fantasy” to “record dreams,” mixing “ancient folklore motifs and contemporary urban characters.” Most of the nineteen stories in the collection are set in Newford, de Lint's fictional American city of subway and alleys, parks and rivers, cafes and clubs, university and library, cathedral and r ...more
JG (The Introverted Reader)
"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 re
Paul Eckert
Mar 05, 2011 Paul Eckert rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
After the first two stories of Dreams Underfoot, I knew that I had found a new author to call one of my favorites. Welcome to the club, Mr. Charles de Lint.

Dreams Underfoot is a collection of short stories that are based in the town of Newford, a melting pot of a city where there exists every demographic extreme and everything in between. Unbeknownst to many of the residents, there are also fairies, spirits, mermaids, goblins, and other fantastical creatures lurking just out of sight. And somet
Book Review: 2 Treasure Boxes

Magic, gemmins, mermaids and ghosts are just a few of the characters we are introduced to in Dreams Underfoot. Each story revolves around a unique and special entity from Mr. de Lint’s imagination and each story is entertaining and well told. This is a universe filled with creatures of urban fantasy.

The Newford series has a different twist on contemporary fantasy. There are no vampires, werewolves, etc, but there is magic which is a melding of Native American spiritu
Dec 29, 2013 Claude rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first of Charles de Lint's works that I have had the pleasure to read, and I have to say that it is as marvelous piece of work!

Yes, it is not perfect, and there are other anthologies out there with far more intriguing tales to tell, but Dreams Underfoot has a certain way with words and creating a new world right at our doorstep that I appreciate, if not adore entirely. First, it makes a unique stand as an anthology of stories based on the same universe and city, with the same people,
Иван Величков
Едно на хиляда е, когато от стотиците книги на непознати за мен автори, които случайно съм загледал, десетките от тях, които съм успял да изнинджа от интернет и десетината от тях, които съм качил на четеца си в момента, да попадна на автор, който пише сякаш лично за мен. Чарлз де Линт е точно такъв. Още от първите 10 страници разбрах, че ме очаква нещо невероятно, но изобщо не бях подготвен за това, което ми донесе книгата.
Да наречеш Dreams Underfoot градско фентъзи е все едно да вкараш в този ж
Dec 31, 2012 Hannah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I first looked at this, I almost dismissed it (but thank god I didn't) because I hate short stories. Those read in school either left me wanting more of the story (please sir, may I have some more?) or wishing I had never read them in the first place. Despite my misgivings, I eventually bought the book because of the reviews, and they were right! This book was enchanting and engrossing; it is probably my favorite book read this year. The ideas presented in the book are very thought provokin ...more
Stephanie Swint
I read this out of order and it may have had some effect on my review. I read The Onion Girl recently and it was my first De Lint novel. I love Newford and the characters. His faerie world he has built is fascinating and is a non juvenile take on urban fantasy. Don't get me wrong, I read and enjoy YA novels, but its also nice to read a more complex and fleshed out version of fantasy/urban fantasy as well.

This book introduces you to many of the characters I learned of in The Onion Girl and I was
Jan 10, 2013 Wdmoor rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series, gave-up
I could not finish this book. Maybe it's not fair to review a book I haven't finished, but here goes...

An acquaintance on a book bb recommended this author based on my love of The Dresden Files and my liking of the Nightside series, but this book is a mess. Maybe I would enjoy it if I was smoking a lot of pot, but I'm not smoking a lot of pot and IMO that, or a lot of time and patience are what it takes to figure out what the hell is going on with this story.

I couldn't figure out if I was readin
I was having some pictures taken in the Spring of 1993 at my Dad's request. It was taking a LOT longer than I'd anticipated and I finished the book I was reading. Lucky for me the local Waldenbooks was *just* across the promenade from where Glamour Shots were located. So, I wandered over and saw this book, the original with the Terri Windling cover? And I'd just finished reading his story "The Moon is Drowning While I Sleep" so I picked this book up. WOW

Now I'm a hardcore CdL fan and proud of it
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Charles de Lint is the much beloved author of more than seventy adult, young adult, and children's books. Renowned as one of the trailblazers of the modern fantasy genre, he is the recipient of the World Fantasy, Aurora, Sunburst, and White Pine awards, among others. Modern Library's Top 100 Books of the 20th Century poll, conducted by Random House and voted on by readers, put eight of de Lint's b ...more
More about Charles de Lint...

Other Books in the Series

Newford (1 - 10 of 28 books)
  • Memory and Dream (Newford, #2)
  • The Ivory and the Horn (Newford, #3)
  • Trader (Newford, #4)
  • Someplace to Be Flying (Newford, #5)
  • Moonlight and Vines (Newford, #6)
  • Forests of the Heart (Newford, #7)
  • The Onion Girl (Newford, #8)
  • Tapping the Dream Tree (Newford, #9)
  • Spirits in the Wires (Newford, #10)
  • Widdershins (Newford, #11)

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