The Magician of Karakosk

A Novella by

Fantasy icon Peter S. Beagle's award-winning book THE INNKEEPER'S SONG was a landmark for two reasons: first because of its rarity, being only his fourth novel in 33 years, and second because it introduced a new and fascinating universe that Beagle would return to again and again over time.

The stories set in that universe - never named by Beagle himself, but gradually identified by his readers as "The Innkeeper's World" - offer some of his finest writing, most colorful characters, and richest flights of the imagination.

This first collection of Innkeeper's World stories was originally published in 1996. Its American publisher called it GIANT BONES, after the last story in the book, but everywhere else in the world it was given the name of a different story from the collection, THE MAGICIAN OF KARAKOSK. For this long-overdue reissue Beagle made significant corrections and changes to the text so that it is now in its definitive form, and brought the title into alignment with the rest of the planet.

The six stories in this collection are a door to a world as real as the one we live in, yet also as strange and magical as only Beagle's great gifts could conceive. Like Beagle himself, after journeying here you will want to return.


The Last Song of Sirit Byar
The Magician of Karakosk
The Tragical Historie of the Jiril's Players
Lal and Soukyan
Choushi-Wah's Story
Giant Bones

"Gentle yet biting, far-fetched and altogether common, Beagle's fairy tales invoke comparison with those associated with yet another great name, the Brothers Grimm...Beagle writes in his foreword that he doesn't do sequels; nevertheless, the world he created in THE INNKEEPER'S SONG (1993) continues to tickle his storytelling instincts: hence, the setting for this collection of six substantial tales, though only one, ``Lal and Soukyan,'' features characters from the novel. Elsewhere, the legendary bard and musician Sirit Byar sings his last song to the gods; the evil Queen of Fors na'Shachim compels Lanak of Karakosk to teach her magic; the Jiril of Derridow's troupe of actors takes to the road; Choushi-Wai relates the tale of Tai-Sharm and the Singing Fish; and the title piece reveals how Grandfather Selsim's descendants became giants. A treat for browsers and Beagle aficionados alike." - Kirkus Associates

- Peter S. Beagle was born in 1939 and raised in the Bronx, just a few blocks from Woodlawn Cemetery, the inspiration for his first novel, A FINE AND PRIVATE PLACE. Today, thanks to classic works such as THE LAST UNICORN, TAMSIN, and THE INNKEEPER'S SONG, he is acknowledged as America's greatest living fantasy author; and his dazzling abilities with language, characters, and magical storytelling have earned him many millions of fans around the world. In addition to stories and novels Beagle has written numerous teleplays and screenplays, including the animated versions of THE LORD OF THE RINGS and THE LAST UNICORN, plus the fan-favorite "Sarek" episode of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION. His nonfiction book I SEE BY MY OUTFIT, which recounts a 1963 journey across America on motor scooter, is considered a classic of American travel writing; and he is also a gifted poet, lyricist, and singer-songwriter. He has won the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and Mythopoeic Awards, along with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the World Fantasy Association, and also France's prestigious Grand Prix de l'Imaginaire.

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