Sunday, January 6, 2008

The Last Unicorn

People know I read.... a lot. So I keep being given books. I currently have about 30 books in various drawers and boxes that I need to read, not counting the "100 Classics to Read Before You Die" list I printed in 2007. Speaking of, I was looking at my list of books I read in '07: I read 50 books. It would have been 51 had I not left "The Chosen" at the office on New Year's Eve. Of those 50, I think 14 were off the Classics list. A little over one classic a month, and almost one book a week (52 weeks in a year, 50 books read. Not bad).

So, The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle, written in 1968.

last unicorn cover

I'd never heard of this book. My Mother-in-law dropped it off with a few more during their visit with us in early November.

It's a fairy tale about a Unicorn who, after hearing two huntsmen speak, believes she may be the last unicorn left alive, and sets forth to find out what happened to them. She travels the country, and because the world is so jaded (ain't that the truth), no one sees her for her true self. They just see a beautiful white mare, that leaves them feeling odd, and gives them odd dreams.

She in imprisoned by an evil carnival-owning witch, is released by a bumbling magician named Schmendrick (what a great name), who accompanies her, along with another lady named Molly (who can see the Unicorn as she is and not a mare) to find the fate of the unicorns.

There are bandits, evil kings a Red Bull, a love-sick prince, magical mishaps, and a happy ending for most. I won't tell more. Just that is was a fun read and for me an allegory of the loss of innocence and faith in our world.

1 comment:

Aktief Kulture said...

I grew up watching the animated movie they made based on the book (Peter S Beagle wrote the screenplay so it stuck to the story). It was such a good cartoon for kids. I also read the book last year and it's one of the most touching fantasy book written, don't you think so?