Reaves (The Shattered World) has done some respectable work in fantasy and other genres, but his latest novel is a lifeless, by- the-numbers urban fantasy that goes through the prescribed motions with little innovation or depth. Teen-age runaway Danny Thayer lives on the streets of San Francisco, eating out of dumpsters and dreaming of a paradisiacal fantasy land to which he might escape when he encounters Robin, an authentic fairy. As Danny's abusive father searches for him, and a hapless detective and his tabloid-reporter girlfriend close in from another angle, Robin and the other ``scatterlings''trapped in our world--entreat Danny to tap the magic within himself that will open a gateway for them all to return to Faerie. Contemporary fantasy is full these days with punk elves haunting our city streets, and Reaves adds nothing to this essentially hollow formula. His characters are born of shallow TV series stock; his Faerie, barely glimpsed, is an anemic utopian realm out of Disney or Steven Spielberg (``a finer, purer one, a world of beauty and adventure and perhaps even love''); and his sugarcoated scatterlings never evoke the eeriness of their ancient legendary precursors. With a fast pace and references to a wide range of popular fantasy books, movies, and comics, this is likely to appeal to an undiscerning readership.