UNICORN MOUNTAIN by Michael Bishop
Kirkus Star


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The author of Ancient of Days (1985) and The Secret Ascension (1987) proffers an intelligent, absorbing modern fantasy involving--unlikely as it may seem--unicorns, AIDS, and Indian magic. Good-hearted Colorado rancher Libby Quarrels takes in young advertising whiz Bo; rejected by his parents because of his homosexuality, Bo is now dying of AIDS. Libby, however, shares a guilty secret with her Ute Indian ranch-hand, Sam Coldpony: they've seen unicorns on the property, ethereal creatures that glow in the dark, cannot be photographed--and appear to be dying of a mysterious ailment. Bo settles in with wry good humor, but soon becomes suspicious. Then Libby's ancient TV begins to pick up programs from another dimension--a world where unicorns are real! Among the further complications: Bo, inspired by the unicorns, creates a civilized ad campaign to promote a superior brand of condom; Sam, haunted by the ghost of his suicide ex-wife, contacts his estranged daughter, who is fated to become a powerful shaman; Libby and Sam fall in love; a cure for the unicorns is found; Bo dies--but also, being physically translated to the unicorns' world, takes the secret of the cure with him. Wonderful characters, a thoroughly satisfying plot, an attractive balance between humor and pathos, and plenty of fascinating twists and turns: Bishop's finest work, and unequivocally recommended.

Pub Date: June 16th, 1988
ISBN: 0000061956
Publisher: Arbor House/Morrow