Revisiting Patricia A. McKillip’s The Forgotten Beasts of Eld

What do you remember when you think of books you read long, long ago? Plot? Character? Setting? Or something more nebulous?

I tend to remember how a book felt, which is about as nebulous as things get. There’s usually one lingering image in my very visual-reader brain, as well. Jo Clayton’s Serroi books feel defiant, a small green girl in a looming landscape. Melanie Rawn’s dragon books are regal, but there’s one image of a picnic that I can never shake, and another of a valley.

Patricia A. McKillip’s The Forgotten Beasts of Eld, on the other hand, is a mountain home, a dragon, solitude, and defensiveness. Rereading the book, which Tachyon Publications just reissued, was a singular experience: marrying those feelings with what actually happens in the book, which both is and is not what I remember.

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld was first published in 1974, ...

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia A. McKillip