A KNOT IN THE GRAIN AND OTHER STORIES by Robin McKinley

A KNOT IN THE GRAIN AND OTHER STORIES

Age Range: 12 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

Four stories (three previously published in Ace anthologies in the early '80s), set (like The Blue Sword, etc.) in mythical Damar, plus a contemporary fifth; the four are romances, the fifth concerns a girl adapting to a new place. Damar, here, is a generic land where princes, witches, and magic reign; characters tend to be symbolic and happenings allegorical. A mute healer finds a voice through a spent wizard; a princess "rescued" by a prince prefers her troll. In the new entry, a comely lass marries a man old enough to be her father; the two must find the real love between them in order to control a magic that threatens to overwhelm them. Though more austere and fragmented, these tales have the luminosity that made McKinley's earlier books so memorable. The title piece, in which a 16-year-old finds a box of -- well, something magical -- that helps her new town ward off a superhighway, is leisurely and inconclusive. Still, for the contemplative, a quality performance. (Fiction. 12+)

Pub Date: May 1st, 1994
ISBN: 0064406040
Page count: 196pp
Publisher: Greenwillow/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 1994




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