Ever since Jilly Coppercorn and Geordie Riddell were introduced in de Lint’s first Newford story, "Timeskip", back in 1989, their friends and readers alike have been waiting for them to realize that they belong together. Now, in Widdershins, a stand-alone novel of fairy courts set in shopping malls and the Bohemian street scene of Newford's Crowsea area, Jilly and Geordie’s story is finally being told.
Before it’s over, we’ll find ourselves plunged into the rancorous and sometimes violent conflict between the magical North American “animal people” and the more newly arrived fairy folk. We’ll watch as Jilly is held captive in a sinister world based on her own worst memories—and Geordie, attempting to help, is sent someplace even worse. And we’ll be captivated by the power of love and determination to redeem ancient hatreds and heal old magics gone sour.
©2006 Charles de Lint (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“As familiarly as though he were chronicling the lives of old friends, de Lint spins yet another magical story of the intersections between reality and the faerie and spirit world in this latest addition to the Newford opus, his twin loves of storytelling and music-making shining through every page....Highly recommended." (Library Journal)
“De Lint weaves the individual characters' stories into a tight-knit whole, accompanied by music, love, pugnacity, frustration, and healing. Many of his faithful readers see the people he has created as kin they want to keep up with. Walk widdershins (i.e., counterclockwise) once and you may, too.” (Booklist)
What I love about Charles De Lint is that he creates worlds that feels so real even though they are completely foreign. You feel like you can step into them and it would somehow make sense. Charles De Lint takes us into the Dreamlands, and the way they are explained and can change quickly; they can easily feel like places in my own dreams.
Widdershins picks up with Geordie and Jilly in a timeline after The Onion Girl. It has been stated,and I agree, that you do not need to read The Newford Books in order but I would say you should read Widdershins after The Onion Girl. You will get much more out of it.
It explores Geordie and Jilly as a couple and what it takes for them to make the decision to stop being friends and take the nextstep. This is a book where two people who have had extremely bad childhoods and lives get to find happiness. This is not to say that Widdershins does not deal with themes of sexual abuse and trauma. It does. It also deals with the necessity of having to deal with ones past instead of locking it away and ignoring it. It is not something someone else can save you from.
Within the book Charles De Lint also explores the world of the faerie and the cousins and the unsteady peace found in the Dreamlands. Manifest destiny did not escape the Dreamlands and its effects have some similar issues dealt with in America. There were a few reviews I have read that have found this preachy but I did not find it so and enjoyed it. I highly recommend Widdershins.
An ongoing De Lint character, Jilly, has further adventures after Onion Girl with the fantastical characters of Faerie and her love of music, art, and Geordie.
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