Two Hearts (Peter S. Beagle Short Story Review)

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Peter S. Beagle’s whimsical fantasy tale The Last Unicorn is a classic. It’s one of my favorite books of all time, so when The Shameful Narcissist recently read and provided a link to a short follow-up to the story, of course I was eager to return to Mr. Beagle’s rich and enchanting world of magicians, unicorns and other mythical beasts.

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The original tale is a clever and spellbinding journey all its own, so I was very hopeful that this newer adventure would be able to capture some of the magic woven in the first book. I was obviously hopeful, but I had to wonder, could Two Hearts manage to match the charm and whimsy of its legendary predecessor? Well, as Captain Cully would say: sit down, have a taco, and let’s talk about Two Hearts.

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Although this short story features multiple characters we came to love in The Last Unicorn, you may be surprised to learn that the main character is someone new entirely. Sooz, a young girl from a small village plagued by a child-eating griffin, is done waiting for the king to send more knights who all seem to fall prey to the very beast they’ve been sent to slay. She’s decided to take matters into her own hands and runs away from home to seek the king out for herself, to get his help specifically. Young Sooz, you see, has heard all about brave King Lir and the dragons and giants he’s slain, the impossible riddles he’s solved, and the maidens he’s saved.

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Unfortunately, no matter how noble the hero, the one thing they may never vanquish is time, and the king is now in the later years of his life, his mind often failing him. On her way to seek the king, Sooz befriends the infamous Molly Grue and Schmendrick the magician from the first tale. Although King Lir is frequent to forget and lose himself as he admits to Sooz, the mention of a familiar character always manages to bring him back, if even for only a matter of time.

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Lir’s bravery and kindness propel him to agree to help Sooz and her village, but will the best intentions of an aging hero be enough to finally bring an end to the griffin? You’ll have to find that one out for yourself. 😉

I will tell you, however, that Peter S. Beagle definitely captured the enchantment of his original tale once more, much to my delight. Especially in the last third or so of the story. We finally get to see what has become of the characters he introduced us to so many years ago, and he introduces us to a brave young girl who would do anything to protect those she cares for against a hungry monstrous creature. For fans of The Last Unicorn, I would definitely say this one is easily worth the read. I enjoyed it and it made me want to re-read the original book again.

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Horror Television Intros

Hey, guys! Hope you’re ready for another horror-related post as Halloween continues to creep up on us. 😀 One of my favorite things about horror-themed television shows, has always been the spooky intros. A good intro/theme song just really sets the mood for the scares about to come. I’m making this post to give some credit where nightmare-inducing-credit is due, so let’s get this party started. In no particular order, here are some of the intros to television shows that perfectly set the tone for the creepy show to follow it. Bonus Points for those of you who get some nostalgia outta this! 😉


Are You Afraid of the Dark?

This show may have been aimed for kids, but that intro definitely creeped many a child (and adult) out, with the eerie music and child laughter, and that ugly ass hobo clown doll. Much like the intro itself, the show was kid-friendly, but still managed to slip in some things that were bound to haunt our sweet, impressionable little minds for years to come.

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Tales From the Darkside

Things start off innocently enough in this intro, with pretty countryside views of the normal everyday world, but then the music and narration takes a sudden turn for the creepy. I loved watching this show, and whether it was daylight or not, that intro always got me ready for the chilling stories to come.

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Twilight Zone

This is probably the most iconic intro to make my list, and a prime example of an “oldie but a goodie”. It’s an intro theme known by older and younger generations alike, and with good reason.

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Tales From the Crypt

Speaking of “iconic”, this theme song was enough to have many a child running to hide under their blankets when they heard it come on. A classic through and through.

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Goosebumps

Okay, I’ll be the first to admit, this show did not age so well, but who cares? Goosebumps may be cheesy now that we’re older, but I loved it growing up, and I sure as hell loved that intro (even with that dog barking along with the tune). 😛

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So, those are MY picks for my favorite horror-themed show intros, but how about you? Do you have any you think deserve a shout out? Hope you guys had fun with this post and that each of you is enjoying your weekend. 😀