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Moonlight & Vines (Newford #6)

4.17  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,623 Ratings  ·  66 Reviews
Imagine a city--cold, hard, concrete jungle on the surface, but, down that dark alley or disused cemetery, magic has begun to unravel the gray fabric of realism. Charles de Lint succumbs to his fascination with the outsider in all of us, and writes of lonesome goth kids, newbie lesbians, strippers, Gypsies, angels of death and mercy, and even vampires and ghosts in a style ...more
Paperback, 462 pages
Published December 15th 1999 by Tor Fantasy (first published December 31st 1998)
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May 16, 2013 Alexandra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy, 2013
This is a tough one to describe. I grappled with what to score it, and settled on four stars in the end.

I'm not keen on de Lint's prose style, and find his dialogue artificial. I suppose my main problem is he reminds me so much of my own juvenile attempts, in my teens, at short fiction. In the early days, I made some of the same mistakes he does. For one thing, his settings and characters come across as things he thinks are cool, as opposed to things that make a good story. It sounds like a who
Aug 01, 2010 Cynthia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
WOW!!! I don't like short stories. I really don't. I want something I can sink my teeth into, something that will allow me to escape fully into the world found in the book. Not some short snippet, nothing more than a tease. The only reason I picked this book up is that I enjoy the author and it was cheap...yard-sale cheap! So I set off, fully expecting that, well, that I wouldn't finish it.

It did take forever to finish, but not why you may think. Each story captured me. de Lint seems to have the
Aug 19, 2014 angie rated it it was amazing
I don't know if you do this or not, but sometimes seeing all the books I have yet to read and long to read again (who's lucky enough to have the time for that?) the only thing that comforts me is to get up and run my fingers along the bookcase. As passionate book lovers, we can't possibly read everything we want to, but sometimes knowing it just exists is enough.

Tonight I pulled my Charles de Lint books down off the shelf and experienced the giddiness I first felt upon discovering his wonderful
Jul 03, 2016 Talie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I should be upfront about being a huge fan of this author and Newford - the place he bases what I believe to be an idealized Ottawa (with a subway!).

I can't say I liked all the stories equally. But I have to hand it to the author to have narrating voices that appeal and other different that are just not for me.

The underlying theme in these stories that keeps me coming back to deLint's books is about staying open to see the magic in everyday life. I can't get enough of the Crow Girls or Geordie
Deborah Ideiosepius
This lovely collection of stories jumped off the shelf at me and I am glad I found it.

While I often find that short story collections can be difficult to review, de Lint's beautiful, deft writing makes these stories easy to review as a whole. While I loved some more than others, they were all beautifully written with cunning characterisation of the protagonists, vivid scene setting and the wistful mythic story elements that are so characteristic of a lot of de Lint's writing.

I did find that ther
Shawn Carroll
Jul 04, 2015 Shawn Carroll rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Charles de Lint is one of my favorite authors from the mid-1980's through the mid-2000's. This collection of short stories are all concern his mythical town of Newford. While each book set in this world is self-contained, they are all interrelated and more enjoyable if you read them in more or less the intended order. I read this after reading several of his other Newford stories, so I cannot say for certain, but I have a suspicion one's enjoyment of this book might be constrained without readin ...more
Michelle Dockrey
May 20, 2009 Michelle Dockrey rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The denizens of Newford inhabit an off-kilter world, one where magic is not only possible but actually occurs. But magic is a slippery entity, not entirely there when you want it or in any recognizable form. The people of Newford are special and wonderful, too, in their own unique ways. They contain a kind of magic that makes them stick like a burr in your memory. The irrepressible Jilly, e.g., firmly believes in magic—in seers, crow girls, pennymen, wish-granting dwarves, what have you—but she’ ...more
Kirk Macleod
Jul 04, 2016 Kirk Macleod rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Charles de Lint's third collection of short stories set in his fictional city of Newford, includes many reoccurring characters, including favourite Jilly Coppercorn, brothers Christy and Geordie Riddell, and the Crow Girls (featured in Someplace to be Flying). Many of the stories in this third collection focus on death and loss, but de Lint tends to end his stories on a hopeful note.

Standout's for me were "Saskia" and "The Fields beyond the Fields" both featuring Christy Riddell (Newfords analog
The grimness is relentless. Although happy endings are the rule rather than the exception – or at least optimistic ones – almost every single character either is going through hell or has gone through hell. It’s nothing new with this book that the number of happy childhoods among his characters can be counted on one hand. (One character did have a happy childhood – but then her entire family was murdered when she was twelve. Another who enjoyed her childhood was made to feel guilty about it beca ...more
Caitlin H
Oct 08, 2015 Caitlin H rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Someone else mentioned in their review that the "grimness is relentless." While i guess the stories are pretty grim, i feel that that overlooks a lot. It overlooks the points made in all the stories, all the magic that can be found in them. Even though de Lint's stories definitely do tend to be more grim than anything else, even under all that, there is for me a sort of magic thrumming through the stories. Not just the incidents the characters get caught up in, but simply in Newford itself & ...more
Jan 20, 2012 Cupcakencorset rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This collection of short stories set in the mystical, magical, occasionally mundane world of Newford give us little glimpses into the lives of the inhabitants, some familiar, some new to us. We are given a sense of the interwoven quality of this world (as is true of all realities) and of the interconnections of the large and small characters’ lives. Indeed, there are no small characters in de Lint’s world, but there are some that recur and even become the principals in some of his novels. These ...more
Larry Wentzel
Not bad. Short stories are De Lint's calling. He takes a concept, makes it into an event, has it befall a small cast of characters, and then watches them react and cope. Some of the stories are quite nice and enjoyable. He samples a lot of different mythologies -- Celtic, Old World European, Greco-Roman, Native American, even Christian and does a lovely job getting deep into an aspect of that mythology and how modern-day people adapt to its sudden, irrefutable presence. And some of these charact ...more
Margaret Pinard
Dec 08, 2014 Margaret Pinard rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Margaret by: Nicholas Mackintosh
Stopped on page 212 of 461. Stories were just too much alike and too unreal, soap-opera-y. Some had kernels of truth to ponder, but the format was too slow, mechanical, or 80's-ish for me to keep going.
Jul 24, 2010 Cyrano rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a fan of De Lint, and of short stories in general, and so a book of De Lint short stories is likely to be a winner with me, especially when one of the lines I stumble upon in the first forty pages is "We know that all endeavor is art, when rendered with conviction." That's a line that hit me, and stuck.
There are some mawkish-feeling moments, but I can both chalk them up to "I only have twenty pages to tell you this story" and also say that they were greatly outnumbered by moments that touche
Feb 17, 2016 Janelle rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Another good collection of Newford short stories. I didn't find it as compelling as his first two anthologies, but it was still a good read.
Apr 20, 2009 Cindi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Charles De Lint, and his cat Claire, Rock my socks off. In the town of Newford (an urban community somewhere in Canada) logic never has to follow, fantasy is the rule. Meet Jilly Coppercorn, the most awesome artist ever born in literary fantasy, and all of her friends in their shared and intertwined adventures in this anthology. You can almost hear them busking on the street corner with that old fiddle, or see them running through the alleyways.
Ghosts in the grave yard have stories to tell, twa
Pamela Lloyd
Aug 19, 2008 Pamela Lloyd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fantasy lovers
Shelves: fantasy
This collection of short stories by Charles de Lint had stories of somewhat uneven quality. Perhaps, since I've read so much de Lint (and this was a second read of this volume for me) I've simply come to hold him to a higher standard. The short story "Held Safe by Moonlight and Vines," from which the book takes its title, is one of my favorites, and I enjoyed several of the others, particularly in the second half of the book, but I felt that a few were not as strong as I've come to expect from d ...more
Emily I
Jun 02, 2015 Emily I rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely love the musicality of De Lint's writing, like prose poetry if prose poetry had plot twists, mystery seekers, and faeries jumping out of the woodwork. That said, this particular collection doesn't quite have the appeal of some of his other work, such as "Dreams Underfoot" and "The Ivory and the Horn", with popular characters such as Jilly and Sophie. The stories tend toward wistfulness, wandering off under vine-tangled forests and into moonlit nights--this is a book for considering ...more
Sweetgrass & City Streets
Saskia read in Space Opera 2/1/1998
In This Soul of a Woman
The Big Sky
Birds read in The Shimmering Door 5/25/1998
Held Safe by Moonlight and Vines
In the Pines
Shining Nowhere But in the DarkLint
If I Close My Eyes Forever
The Invisibles
Seven for a Secret
Crow Girls RE-READ 5/21/2015
Wild Horses
In the Land of the Unforgiven
My Life as a Bird
China Doll
In the Quiet After Midnight
The Pennymen
Twa Corbies RE-READ 5/21/2015
The Fields Beyond the Fields

Oct 05, 2014 Andrew rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Not quite as good as the previous two Newford collections, but there are still a couple of gems.
Nov 22, 2008 Kitty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paranormal
Never thought I'd be one for short stories, but I really like this author. I'd have to call it fantasy, but most of it is set in the "modern world". It's like ordinary people finding themselves in almost a "Twilight Zone" type episode. Stories included one about a female vampire that befriends a lonely female exotic dancer, one about a guy who dies but isn't ready to "move on", and one about an Internet community where people from all over add information about books and stories - the Wordwood.
Tom Franklin
Jun 08, 2010 Tom Franklin rated it it was amazing
Charles de Lint is one of my favorite short story writers. He melds the calm, quiet writing style of Richard Brautigan with a celtic mysticism transformed into an everyday thing (and the change of worldview that commonality implies) if viewed just right.

He writes about a world of possibility, of the seen and unseen and good irish music. And, dang, if I don't wish I could write anywhere close to as well as he does.
Dec 12, 2008 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Charles de Lint is one of my favorite fantasy authors. His website is awesome ( ) .
Reading one of his books is like stepping into one of the more lush Impressionist paintings and being able to ferret out all of the secrets inside. (You'd think I would have said Pre-Raphaelite, wouldn't you, I grin - but nope. I'm thinking a Renoir or Manet)
May 08, 2012 Kate rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a re-read for me. As with most de Lint, I found it not nearly as engaging the second time through. I'm not really sure why. The stories are Newford stories, which I've found is generally what I prefer with de Lint (I've yet to find anyone who writes urban fantasy with the brilliant juxtaposition of the mundane and the fantastical the way that de Lint does)).
Jun 10, 2012 Liz rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I love the world of Charles de Lint, but he is not at his best in a short story collection. There are too many of the same elements in all his writing. He has a distinctive style and always writes about the same kinds of people experiencing magic in the real world. Great stuff, but repetitive in stories piled one on top of the other.
A collection of his short stories, with recurring characters in his created milieu. I go off and on with this author. It's urban fantasy in the sense of fairies, sprites and manitou in cities. He made me want to visit Toronto. I have to be in the right mood to read him, as sometimes he's depressing. He does write well though.
Heather Larcombe
Jan 17, 2014 Heather Larcombe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lovely read. Engaging characters. May need to hunt up others in this series.
Stuart Lutzenhiser
A series of short stories set in Newford - de Lint's fictional town that seems to be in Canada. I enjoyed most of them. None were bad - but some were quite good. I like his writing quite bit. I always forget how much until I read something of his. Have to do more.
I went through a period several years ago where I read a lot of Charles de Lint's books. I remember Sally had recommended them. I can't quite remember which ones I had read at this point, but I remember enjoying the mix of magic & the real world.
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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 27 books)
  • Dreams Underfoot (Newford, #1)
  • Memory and Dream (Newford, #2)
  • The Ivory and the Horn (Newford, #3)
  • Trader (Newford, #4)
  • Someplace to Be Flying (Newford, #5)
  • 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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“Magic's never what you expect it to be, but it's often what you need.” 71 likes
“I envy the music lovers hear. I see them walking hand in hand, standing close to each other in a queue at a theater or subway station, heads touching while they sit on a park bench, and I ache to hear the song that plays between them: The stirring chords of romance's first bloom, the stately airs that whisper between a couple long in love. You can see it in the way they look at each other... you can almost hear it. Almost, but not quite, because the music belongs to them and all you can have of it is a vague echo that rises up from the bittersweet murmur and shuffle of your own memories.” 49 likes
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