An odd couple patrols a county full of mythological beasts and ornery locals. A familiar youngster from the world of The Last Unicorn is gifted in magic but terrible at spell-casting. A seemingly incorruptible judge meets his match in a mysterious thief who steals his heart. Two old friends discover that the Overneath goes anywhere, including locations better left unvisited.
Lyrical, witty, and insightful, The Overneath is Peter S. Beagle’s much-anticipated return to the short form. In these uniquely beautiful and wholly original tales, with new and uncollected work, Beagle once again proves himself a master of the imagination.
This being my 400th book to review in 2017 I felt it called for something special and since the 50th anniversary of one of the most enduring classics that has impacted an untold number of children is coming up next year I knew the perfect author to choose.
Peter S. Beagle gave us The Last Unicorn in 1968 which was then made into a movie in 1982 which is currently playing on Netflix if you need a reminder. His talent to create vivid settings, enchanting characters and worlds that came straight out of our dreams and nightmares taught us about the world in a refreshingly honest way.
Even 60 years after he started putting pen to page what made Beagle so uplifting, fresh and enduring has not lost its luster with his latest collection of short stories.
We have over ten tales to take us away including the chance to relive that childhood magic from long ago by meeting Schmendrick once again. Diving into his illustrious work you get to walk down memory lane when life could just be full of mythic beings, hauntings to give you goosebumps and people you wish were real so they could make this world just a little easier to live in.
You will travel to China and immerse yourself in beautiful Asian folklore, to the Middle East where the sands of time are wiped away to tickle your imagination, or maybe very close to your own backyard where Dragons might just exist.
What is truly beautiful about this book is that Beagle’s writing lets you believe, if only for a little while, that magic, mythos and wonder are real. As you enter his world you become part of it and for that time the impossible is achievable.
Thank you to Netgalley and Tachyon Publications for allowing me to review this book.
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*synopsis and pic from netgalley.com
Update received today:
TO ALL REVIEWERS OF “THE OVERNEATH” AND OTHER STORY COLLECTIONS BY PETER S. BEAGLE:
This is to inform you that Peter S. Beagle has been publicly taking sole credit for stories he did not, in fact, write entirely by himself, despite demands by his co-author that this incomplete attribution be corrected. We are now correcting the record in the ebook editions (where possible) and taking legal steps to permanently correct the record in all other editions as well.
1) Stories inaccurately attributed solely to Peter S. Beagle.
From 2002 through 2015 Connor Cochran was not simply Beagle’s editor, but in fact co-authored nine stories, one novel manuscript, and several film treatments previously attributed solely to Beagle, contributing anywhere from 15% to 80% of the final text, large portions (or all) of the plots, and nearly all the titles. This truth was not shared with the public previously for commercial and brand protection reasons. Legal developments now require us to correct the attribution.
Proof of co-authorship is available in PDF form upon request, including all drafts, all creative collaboration correspondence between Beagle and Cochran, and later written acknowledgements by Beagle of Cochran’s role. To get this documentation, simply email your request to email@example.com.
In any review of any of the following stories, the story attribution should hereafter be “Peter S. Beagle & Connor Cochran” (with the exception of the novel I’m Afraid You’ve Got Dragons, which will be attributed to “Connor Cochran & Peter S. Beagle” when finally published because Cochran was the original concept/plot creator and majority writer of the text):
• “Dirae” (published in 2010 in the original anthology Warriors)
• I’m Afraid You’ve Got Dragons (originally sold to Firebird Books and later withdrawn; first publication upcoming)
• Return (published in 2010 by Subterranean Press)
• “Sleight of Hand” (published in 2009 in the original anthology Eclipse Three)
• “The Best Worst Monster” (published in 2011 in the story collection Sleight of Hand)
• “The Fable of the Octopus” (published in 2006 in the story collection The Line Between)
• “Trinity County, CA: You’ll Want To Come Again, and We’ll Be Glad To See You!” (published in the August 2010 issue of Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show)
• “Underbridge” (published in 2011 in the original anthology Naked City: Tales of Urban Fantasy)
• “Vanishing” (published in 2009 in the March 2009 issue of Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show)
• “The Way It Works Out and All” (published in the July/August 2011 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction)
We request that you correct any existing reviews to include accurate author credits.
2) Stories that never acknowledged Connor Cochran’s essential non-editorial contributions
We also note for completeness that Cochran provided essential noneditorial creative input (including variously initial concepts or cues, critical ideas, character names, plots, plot development, or titles, and in some cases substantial text additions not quite rising to the level of coauthorship) to each of the following works previously attributed solely to Beagle:
• “By Moonlight” (completed in 2008, published in 2009 in the story collection We Never Talk About My Brother)
• “El Regalo” (completed in 2005, published in 2006 in the story collection The Line Between)
• In Calabria (worked on from 2011 through 2015, published in 2017 by Tachyon Publications)
• “La Lune T’Attend” (completed in 2008, published in 2010 in the original anthology Full Moon City)
• “Music, When Soft Voices Die” (completed in 2010, published in 2011 in the original anthology Ghosts By Gaslight: Stories of Steampunk and Supernatural Suspense)
• “Oakland Dragon Blues” (completed in 2008, published in 2009 in the original anthology The Dragon Book: Magical Tales from the Masters of Modern Fantasy)
• “Olfert Dapper’s Day” (completed in 2011, published in the March/April 2012 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction)
• “Quarry” (completed in 2003, published in 2004 in the May 2004 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction)
• “Salt Wine” (completed in 2006, published in the June 2006 issue of Fantasy Magazine)
• Summerlong (worked on from 2001 through 2015, published in 2016 by Tachyon Publications)
• “Tarzan and the Virginian” aka “The Ape-Man of Mars” (completed in 2011, published in 2013 in the original anthology Under the Moons of Mars: New Adventures on Barsoom)
• “The Bridge Partner” (completed in 2009, published in 2011 in the story collection Sleight of Hand)
• “The Last and Only, or, Mr. Moscowitz Becomes French” (completed in 2007, published in 2007 in the original anthology Eclipse One)
• “The Rock in the Park” (completed in 2008, published in 2010 in the story collection Mirror Kingdoms)
• “The Woman Who Married the Man in the Moon” (completed in 2010, published in 2011 in the story collection Sleight of Hand)
• “Up the Down Beanstalk: A Wife Remembers— Special to The Cumulonimbus Weekly Chronicle, as recounted by Mrs. Eunice Giant, 72 Fairweather Lane, East-Of-The-Bean, Sussex Overhead —” (completed in 2006, published in 2009 in the original anthology Troll’s Eye View: A Book of Villainous Tales)
• “We Never Talk About My Brother” (completed in 2007, published in the July 2007 issue of Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show)
As with the works in Category 1, documentation is available in PDF form upon request. To get this documentation, please email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We request that you correct any review of these works to reflect that Connor Cochran had an essential role in their creation.