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Jack of Kinrowan (The Fairy Tale Series)

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4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  3,149 ratings  ·  80 reviews
Jack of Kinrowan
An acknowledged classic of contemporary fantasy, Jack of Kinrowan brings together in one volume Charles de Lint's rollicking saga of wild faerie magic on the streets of the city.

Jack, the Giant Killer
A faceless gang of bikers on Wild Hunt through the streets of present-day Ottawa hurtles young Jacky Rowan across the threshold into the perilous land of Faeri
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Paperback, 412 pages
Published July 2nd 1999 by Tor Books (first published 1995)
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Community Reviews

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JG (The Introverted Reader)
In Jack the Giant Killer, the first of two novellas in this book, Jacky Rowan has just realized that her life is not going where she wants it to go. She drifts along, refusing to take care of her life and just staying at home doing nothing. She decides to change her life after a nasty breakup. In a fit of pique, she goes out drinking alone. Staggering home, she sees a little man being chased by 9 men on motorcycles. She tries to help him, but the little man is killed. She runs to a nearby house ...more
Chris
I wish Goodreads allowed half stars because I think this book is really a 3.5.

Jack the Giant-Killer retells the Jack motif from folklore. de Lint has a good twist by making this Jack, a Jacky. The strange thing it that the more interesting character, for me at least, is her friend Kate "Crackernuts" Hazel. Kate seems to be more of a living character. The story makes wonderful use of fairy motif and allusions (and what de Lint book doesn't). The one weak spot was that romance, in particualr the c
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Hope Smash
I wish there were half starts because I would give this 4.5. I really enjoyed the first book in this two book edition. I love other books by Charles de Lint, he is a master of urban fantasy. This book is no exception. The story really snares you in in the first few pages. A humanbeing transported into a world of fairie, but still taking place in Ottawa. Jacky Rowan having just broken up with her boyfriend stumbles on a group of otherworldly bikers beating up a strange old man in the park. She tr ...more
Lake County Public Library Indiana
This book is a combination of two of de Lint's “Jack” novels – Jack the Giant Killer and Drink Down the Moon. The world is lots of fun – 1980s/90s Ottowa exists side by side with the realm of the fae taken more or less straight from European and Celtic folklore, with some fun modern twists. My favorite part, though, was how realistic the main characters were. When you talk about a Strong Female Character, Jacky and Kate are what it should mean: they are strong, brave, smart, and determined but a ...more
Rosanna
Mediocre at Best

I had high hopes for this book and was greatly disappointed. I will admit I’m a huge fantasy fan, but haven’t explored too much urban fantasy. Now normally I would question why fairies, hobs, and other mythical creatures—usually associated with the earth and Mother Nature—would be living in a polluted, crowded city and if mythical creatures did dwell in a city, I would imagine them to be more fiendish, evil type creatures. However, I was willing to put aside my initial biases an
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Heather
It's ironic because, across the board, I like CdeL's short stories better than his novels. But this book is made up of two novellas and I wish they were longer -- particularly the first which I think could have easily been book length all by itself. It's also funny reading CdeL again now -- however many thousands of urban fantasy novels later and remembering when what he was doing seemed so unusual and creative. He's kind of the granddaddy of it all, or one of them anyway. There's an indescribab ...more
Rachel Boling
I've read the first novel in this set of two novels a couple times now, once years ago, and then a couple weeks ago, since I checked out the omnibus, and I needed a refresher to read the second.

The book was written before Harry Potter, and the author's take on the magical world is thus unaffected by the mindset of the Harry Potter books. Instead of a escape into the magical world, this one is just as nitty gritty, full of courageousness characters, who need someone to step in and save them. The
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Carrie
Feb 09, 2008 Carrie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of urban fantasy
Shelves: fantasy
This is one of my favorite Charles de Lint books. Yes, you will find the familiar formula of a young woman who, at first, feels uncertain about herself and her life, but then goes through a period of growth and transformation by embarking on a journey of sorts, making friends and enemies along the way, and then defeating a force of darkness in the final showdown. But there's a reason you see this formula in a lot of literature: it's a basic metaphor for what we all go through again and again at ...more
Marsha
This is a pair of novels, detailing the life of one Jacqueline Rowan. After her fed-up boyfriend leaves her, tired of her home bound ways, Jacky goes out drinking and stumbles on the world of faery, where a battle between the Seelie and Unseelie Courts has long been underway, with the dread Unseelie Court becoming stronger with every passing day. Jack is expected to be a hero but she’s just a girl…isn’t she?

This was an exciting tale for me, one where a young girl rose up to become an unlikely h
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Robin
This book is a compilation of two of Charles de Lint's novels: Jack the Giant Killer and Drink Down the Moon. It was my first foray into Charles de Lint's work and I was impressed. In Kate and Jacky, de Lint has written two very realistic women characters who are not only strong and brave and smart, but who are also occasionally scared, and confused, and who make mistakes. The result is a couple of really three-dimensional characters who were easy for me to relate to.

The story itself is also qui
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Grace
Oo...kay. I was trying to add a review for _Muse and Reverie_, and it keeps giving me an entry for Jack of Kinrowan when I try to select that title.

So...this is for _Muse and Reverie_...a good collection overall, even if de Lint's standby story lines of simple inner-city musicians encounter the magical is getting a little worn. I just wish he'd shown a little more creativeness with this volume. The only standout stories are "Somewhere in My Mind There is a Painting Box" and the story near the e
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Ash
I finished Jack of Kinrowan by Charles de Lint, which is divided into two stories -- Jack, the Giant Killer and Drinking Down the Moon. While I was impressed with de Lint's writing style, I thought he did a great injustice to the reader. Let me explain . . .

Jacky Rowan is the main character of both stories, yet her portrayal as the fabled Jack of Kinrowan is a disappointing one. Jacky makes stupid decisions, especially in Drinking Down the Moon, which leads her friend Kate "Crackernuts" Hazel to
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Suzanne
The first de Lint I read -- it was a terrific gateway book! It's a great intro to what deLint does best -- the intertwining of fairy tale, myth, and contemporary urban life. Well concieved, though not as deep as his Newford stories.
Ariana Deralte
May 06, 2009 Ariana Deralte rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fairy-tale addicts, residents of Ottawa
I really enjoyed the mixing of fairy tale into a modern day setting, though I felt I lost something of the modern setting by never having been to those cities since it made no difference to me where the Lord's Court was etc.

Another thing I like about these books is the realistic, but strong female characters, and the good friendships. I enjoyed the plot of the first book and thought it was very nicely done. The second book, on the other hand, seemed to meander and never did what the blurb on th
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Otis Campbell
Goin' home, late last night
Suddenly I got a fright
Yeah I looked through a window and surprised what I saw
A fairy with boots and dancin' with a dwarf
Sherrin Seguin
I'm not sure why but I found this book ridiculously hard to "Get into". I powered through and it was an enjoyable read but by no means was it a page turner.
Kate
An entertaining and charming reboot of the "Jack and the Beanstalk"/"Jack the Giant Killer" fairy tale, set as an urban fantasy in a Canadian town where the Wild Hunt rides Harley Davidsons instead of fiery steeds of the equine variety. Ultimately, I felt like the book was a little rushed - an outline for a richer novel, perhaps - and consequently fell a little flat. This book could have been expanded to a full urban fantasy epic and left this reader much more satisfied; this slender YA-appropri ...more
Althea Ann
This is an omnibus edition containing "Jack the Giant-Killer" and its sequel, "Drink Down the Moon." I'd read the first novel before, but not the second.
Both concern two young human women – Jacky, and her best friend Kate, who turn out to be destined to be particularly useful to Faerie – the magical world which co-exists with our own, but which most people do not see. Although much reduced in modern times, the Seelie and Unseelie courts are still in conflict with one another – not to mention the
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Maria Verrill
And....Jack is a girl.
Samuel Lubell
Rating is for Drink Down the Moon only. I liked the second book better than the first. Yes Jacky did some dumb moves, especially returning to the Tower the second time, even in disguise, but taking risks and depending on luck is part of the Jack character in traditional folk tales. Kate is much better developed in the second book and there was a more cohesive plot. I liked how the Jacky plotline and the Johnny plotline don't meet until the very end. And it was better written than the earlier boo ...more
Parthenia
Sep 25, 2008 Parthenia rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Pierce, Rowling, Tolkein, Atwaters, Meyer fans.
The first book I ever read by Charles de Lint was The Blue Girl and it was all it took for me to be a devoted fan of his works. The name of the author alone made me buy the book and it didn't disappoint, it was a captivating tale of fantasy that only de Lint could craft. Go get lost in a tale of only we wish could be true: fairytales.
Lioness
Oct 14, 2008 Lioness rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Felicia Day
These stories were the first ones I read of De Lint and I knew I had found an author I would follow anywhere. So far, many years later, that has held true.
This is Urban Fantasy/Urban paranormal, whatever you want to call it, at it's best. The characters are compelling and the city life blends seamlessly with the fantasy. These early tales are fairytale based but deLint expands in later books to include other mythologies.
Becca
The first book was better than the second. I loved both, but the second was a bit disjointed, and the back cover description was way off. I found it strange that de Lint made a few references to the Native American spirits of his other novels, but never really gave detail to them. There were an awful lot of those references, too. All the same, it was neat to see his take on just the fairies, without other spirits around.
Erin
Silly, fun fantasy fluff. As usual, DeLint is overly earnest about incorporating his love of music, and loves to romanticize Native beliefs. Sigh. Also as usual: the storyline of feisty young urban woman who doesnt believe in magic BUT THEN SOMETHING MAGICAL HAPPENS TO HER! Totally formulaic, totally love it. Still, he does know how to tell an enjoyable story and it was a fun change from my academic routine.
Matt
One of the standards of “Urban Fantasy”. In medieval times, fairy stories were always set in a world next to ours, but with it’s own rules. Delint simply updates this to the modern era.
Not a lot of surprises in the narrative, but that isn’t really the point. A good gateway into the Urban Fantasy genre, but probably doesn’t hold much that is new for people already well versed in that area.
[Name Redacted]
This book is actually two earlier books put together, stories linked largely by the characters involved and not by any real plot details. An interesting and quick read with a typically fun de Lint take on urban fantasy, it is nonetheless one of his lesser works and largely unsatisfying. Read it or don't, your life won't be altered in the slightest either way.
Audrey Terry
This is the first of de Lint's books that I've read. I was actually really impressed. De Lint takes a well known fairytale character and gives it an entirely new life. Before I began reading I wasn't truly expecting a story about faeries, but was delighted once it all took off. There are far too few stories of this caliber running around currently.
Verity
I enjoyed it, especially the scenes in the park or under hedges or in the garden. What I remember (now, 3 months later) more than anything else except the bare bones of the story is that the greenery was well done. I could feel, smell and taste the outdoors. This is undoubtedly because I was stuck indoors, in the hospital and rehab after a heart attack.
Winged_One
This was one of the first modern re telling of a fairy tale that I read. This kindled a love of a genre that was still finding itself. When I pick up a paranormal book, an urban fantasy, or a sci-fi I look for the feeling I got when I found this book. A sense of magic and fairy tales written for adults (or young adults) to enjoy.
Sam Grace
Although I can barely remember his other books, I really enjoyed this one. It's not deep, but it's a fun read. I don't know enough European myth to critique its presentation, but I enjoyed its presence. Some of his stories feel too ... dreamy? ... to me, but this one's got a lot of adventure and a heroine I dig. Candy, though.
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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

The Fairy Tale Series (8 books)
  • The Sun, the Moon, & the Stars
  • The Nightingale
  • Snow White And Rose Red
  • Tam Lin
  • Briar Rose
  • White as Snow
  • Fitcher's Brides
The Blue Girl (Newford) Dreams Underfoot (Newford, #1) The Onion Girl (Newford, #8) Someplace to Be Flying (Newford, #5) Moonheart

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