Dreams of Distant Shores

Dreams of Distant Shores

3.92 (634 ratings by Goodreads)

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Featuring an original introduction by Peter S. Beagle, author of The Last Unicorn.

Bestselling author Patricia A. McKillip (The Riddle-Master of Hed) is one of the most lyrical writers gracing the fantasy genre. With the debut of her newest work, Dreams of Distant Shores is a true ode to her many talents.

Within these pages you will find a youthful artist possessed by both his painting and his muse and seductive travelers from the sea enrapturing distant lovers. The statue of a mermaid comes suddenly to life, and two friends are transfixed by a haunted estate.

Fans of McKillip's ethereal fiction will find much to delight them; those lucky enough to be discovering her work will find much to enchant them.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 288 pages
  • 140 x 188 x 20.32mm | 227g
  • San Francisco, United States
  • English
  • 1616962186
  • 9781616962180
  • 290,416

Review quote

Praise for Dreams of Distant Shores

An Overdrive Recommended Book
2016 Locus Recommended Reading List
A Barnes & Noble Blog Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Collections and Anthologies of 2016

[STAR] "McKillip (Wonders of the Invisible World), winner of the World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievement, collects nine dazzling shorter pieces (both originals and reprints) in this outstanding collection. The brief, creepy "Weird" opens the volume, merging an oddly romantic picnic in a bathroom and a mysterious threat outside into something that exists in a darkly beautiful interstitial place. The longest piece, "Something Rich and Strange," which appeared originally as a standalone novella in Brian Froud's Faerielands series, is an ecological fairy tale that contains the most gorgeous of McKillip's prose ("her blind stare of pearl and wormwood")--and the weakest of her plots, but even weaker McKillip is well worth reading. The newer stories also shine. "Mer" is a small gem about a nameless witch, a fishing village, and a mermaid statue. "Edith and Henry Go Motoring" features a toll bridge that leads travelers on an unexpected journey. Beyond the short fiction, the volume finishes with an essay on writing high fantasy, and an appreciation of McKillip's work by renowned fantasist Peter S. Beagle. Fans of exquisite prose and ethereal fantasy will need to own this."
--Publishers Weekly

"A young couple trade odd stories in a bathroom as something rages outside. An artist calls upon his muse, who answers him through an unfinished painting. A musical band of witches takes on a dark force during their bar performance. The seven ethereal tales (including three new ones), collected here touch on people's dreams and desires. Also featured is McKillip's 2002 essay on writing high fantasy and Peter S. Beagle's afterword, "Dear Pat," an appreciation of McKillip's work. VERDICT: McKillip (Wonders of the Invisible World) once more enchants with this volume, which fantasy readers will devour as they are transported into -multiple -realities."
--Library Journal

"VERDICT This collection of fascinating and haunting tales that will linger with readers is a strong addition to short story and fantasy collections; hand to fans of Holly Black, Robin McKinley, and Donna Jo Napoli."
--School Library Journal

"Elegant and absorbing, [McKillip's] work never reads as stiff or formal, as some fantasy stories can lean toward, and the language, while beautiful, never loses the reader, but instead remains both lyrical and deeply visceral."
--Manhattan Book Review

"Absolutely spellbinding. It has been a very long time since we read a gathering of short stories as perfect and beguiling as these."
--Starburst, 10 of 10 stars

"McKillip's prose is both lovely and thought-provoking. Highly recommended to readers who enjoy fantastical short works."
--Fantasy Literature

"Lovely prose . . . Dreams of Distant Shores is for the discerning fantasy reader."
--Elitist Book Reviews

"Patricia A. McKillip's Dreams of Distant Shores is a stunningly beautiful and magnificent short story collection filled with excellent high fantasy. It's a perfect example of what lyrical fantasy authors are capable of achieving in modern fantasy fiction, because each of the stories is captivating and offers something new to readers."

"A portal to the immanent magical worlds that McKillip convincingly suggests are nearby."

"A new Patricia McKillip book is always a cause for celebration . . . There's not a wrong [story] note here"
--Fantasy & Science Fiction

"Glimpses of things which remain timeless, nameless, and true."
--Strange Horizons

"Each tale felt like a dream permeated by a different style of magic . . . An excellent collection."
--Worlds Without End

"It's both essential for fans and a lovely introduction to her work."
--B&N Sci Fi & Fantasy blog

"All the stories struck me as treasures."
--Through Raspberry Colored Glasses

"I love Patricia McKillip's novels, but even more, I am passionate about her brilliant short stories--those coruscating jewels that are both remarkable for their language, their power, their wit, and their depth. She writes pure fantasy and historical fantasy with equal ease. More, more please."
-Jane Yolen, author of Briar Rose, Sister Emily's Lightship, Devil's Arithmetic, andSister Light, Sister Dark

"Ever since finding and loving The Riddle-Master of Hed many years ago, I have read everything Patricia McKillip has written. You should too. Start with this book!"
--Garth Nix, author of Sabriel and the Keys to the Kingdom series

Anyone about to open this book is a very lucky person indeed. You are about to encounter mysteries, monsters jewels, songs, witches, a treasure chest of story. Here are magic worlds, places of enchantment, and a wonderful, lyrical voice to guide you through them."
--Lisa Goldstein, author of The Red Magician and The Uncertain Places

"Some authors we read for their characters and their plots, others for the beauty of their language. I read Pat McKillip for all three. She's gifted beyond compare, a national treasure who should be cherished by all lovers of literature, and Dreams of Distant Shores is a perfect example of why I hold her in such high esteem."
--Charles de Lint, author of The Riddle of the Wren and The Blue Girl

"Absolutely spellbinding. It has been a very long time since we read a gathering of short stories as perfect and beguiling as these. 10/10 stars."
--Starburst Magazine

"If you're a fan of modern High Fantasy that still manages to be fresh and new, I definitely recommend this."
--Brad K. Horner

"These are the types of fantasies that open you to the fae and just don't let go immediately. I felt like I had become part of the wind and words, floating around waiting to be reality...recommending this to any and all people with imagination"
--In Pursuit of My Own Library

"Dreams of Distant Shores by Patricia A. McKillip is unique, captivating, and a work of art."
--Luxury Reading

"Dreams of Distant Shores will deserve a place in the collections of modern fantasy fans."
--Fresh Fiction

"Patricia A. McKillip displays an amazing imagination in Dreams of Distant Shores. Each story is unique. Each story has vivid setting and engaging characters. The imagery is absolutely beautiful. Surprises are the norm in these tales, so prepare to be entertained."
--Whiskey with My Book

"Tachyon Publications has a knack for putting out excellent collections of short stories."
--The Warbler

"McKillip's prose is gorgeous as usual, and she blends art and myth wonderfully."
--Fantasy Cafe
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About Patricia A. McKillip

Patricia A. McKillip is the bestselling author of more than thirty much-beloved fantasy novels, including The Riddle-Master of Hed, Harpist in the Wind, and The Sorceress and the Cygnet. She has received the World Fantasy Award for The Forgotten Beasts of Eld, Ombria in Shadow, and Solstice Wood, for which she also received the Mythopoeic Award. McKillip has also received the World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievement. She recently published the novel Kingfisher and the collection Dreams of Distant Shores. McKillip lives in Oregon.
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Rating details

634 ratings
3.92 out of 5 stars
5 28% (175)
4 44% (282)
3 22% (138)
2 5% (29)
1 2% (10)
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