cover image The Unicorn Sonata

The Unicorn Sonata

Peter S. Beagle. Turner Publications Inc, $16.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-57036-288-0

A quarter century after the publication of his bestselling novel The Last Unicorn, Beagle (The Innkeeper's Song) returns to his fabled beasts for a charming fantasy initially set in contemporary Los Angeles. A misfit 13-year-old girl, Joey Rivera, hears mysterious music and encounters an even more mysterious boy who calls himself Indigo. Thus begins a quest that leads Joey to the faerie land of Shei'rah, source of the music and home of the Old Ones, unicorns who are menaced by blindness. Indigo is a unicorn who has preferred to remain in our world in human form, but he helps Josephine to take her grandmother to Shei'rah and to cure the plague of blindness. The story is slight, but the characterizations are grand, enhanced by graceful prose laced with exquisite detail, and through both literary creativity and folkloric expertise where unicorns are concerned. The return to unicorns and the massive promotional effort behind the novel should put Beagle's name before the public in a way that it has deserved to be for many years. Eleven full-color illustrations by Robert Rodriguez, not seen by PW. $100,000 ad/promo; author tour. (Oct.)