The Last Unicorn: The Lost Journey

Peter S. Beagle

Commemorating the 50th anniversary of The Last Unicorn, here is the original and newly-illustrated tale of Peter S. Beagle’s most famous creation. Discover her might-have-been journey, both appealingly familiar and wonderfully strange.


The Last Unicorn: The Lost Journey

by Peter S. Beagle

ISBN: Print: 978-1-61696-308-6

Published: November 2018

Available Format(s): Hardcover


Peter S. Beagle first imagined his beloved unicorn at the age of twenty-three, five years before she would spring into the world. Now, alongside Beagle’s wry musings upon his early writing career, is the rediscovered origin story of fantasy’s most famous unicorn. Within this genesis of The Last Unicorn, our equine heroine encounters a cranky dragon, a chatty butterfly, and an exiled demon with a split personality.

Discover a might-have-been journey, appealingly familiar yet wonderfully strange, lyrical and whimsical by turns. Somewhere in-between the modern and mythological, lies the first path of the Last Unicorn on a road less traveled by . . . until now.

About the author

Peter S. Beagle is the best-selling author of The Last Unicorn, which has sold a reported five million copies since its initial publication. His other novels include A Fine & Private Place, The Innkeeper’s Song, Tamsin, Summerlong, and In Calabria. Beagle’s short fiction has been collected in four volumes by Tachyon Publications, including The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche, The Line Between, We Never Talk About My Brother,  Sleight of Hand, and The Overneath. He has won the Hugo, Nebula, Mythopoeic, and Grand Prix de l’Imaginaire awards and the World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievement. Beagle lives in Northern California, where he is working on nearly innumerable projects.

Praise for Peter S. Beagle

 “Short story and fantasy lovers will devour these tasty tidbits that whet the appetite for more.”
Library Journal

“[Beagle] has been compared, not unreasonably, with Lewis Carroll and J. R. R. Tolkien, but he stands squarely—and triumphantly—on his own feet.”
The Saturday Review

“… One of my favorite writers.”
—Madeleine L’Engle, author of A Wrinkle in Time and A Swiftly Tilting Planet

“Peter S. Beagle illuminates with his own particular magic such commonplace matters as ghosts, unicorns, and werewolves. For years a loving readership has consulted him as an expert on those hearts’ reasons that reason does not know.”
—Ursula K. Le Guin, author of A Wizard of Earthsea and The Left Hand of Darkness

“The only contemporary to remind one of Tolkien.”

“Peter S. Beagle is (in no particular order) a wonderful writer, a fine human being, and a bandit prince out to steal readers’ hearts.”
—Tad Williams, author of The Dragonbone Chair and The Very Best of Tad Williams

“It’s a fully rounded region, this other world of Peter Beagle’s imagination…an originality…that is wholly his own.”

“Not only does Peter Beagle make his fantasy worlds come vividly, beautifully alive; he does it for the people who enter them.”
—Poul Anderson, author of The High Crusade

“Peter S. Beagle is the magician we all apprenticed ourselves to. Before all the endless series and shared-world novels, Beagle was there to show us the amazing possibilities waiting in the worlds of fantasy, and he is still one of the masters by which the rest of the field is measured.”
—Lisa Goldstein, author of The Red Magician and The Uncertain Places

“Peter S. Beagle would be one of the century’s great writers in any arena he chose; we readers must feel blessed that Beagle picked fantasy as a homeland. Magic pumps like blood through the veins of his stories. Imparting passionately breathing, singing, laughing reality to the marvelous is his great gift to us all.”
—Edward Bryant, author of Cinnabar

Praise for The Overneath

“I was lucky enough to get an advance reading copy of this book a month ago, and reading it reminded me why Peter S Beagle is one of my favorite authors.”
—Patrick Rothfuss, author of The Name of the Wind

[STARRED REVIEW] “A masterful collection from a short story master—a must-read for Beagle fans.”
Kirkus, starred review

[STARRED REVIEW] “With sharp, lean elegance, Beagle (In Calabria) effortlessly chronicles the lives of unicorns, trolls, magicians, and adventurers in 13 poignant stories.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review

[STARRED REVIEW] “Beagle’s strong and versatile talent is well on display here, and fantasy readers will be missing out if they don’t give it a look.”
Booklist, starred review

Verdict: For fantasy fans, Beagle should be a staple.”
Library Journal

“Peter Beagle deserves a seat at the table with the great masters of fantasy. If you had any doubts, The Overneath will dispel them.”
—Christopher Moore, author of Lamb and The Serpent of Venice

“These stories open a wider window on the work of a master storyteller. We all have something to learn—about writing, about humanity, about hope—from Peter Beagle.”
—Seanan McGuire author of Rosemary and Rue

Praise for In Calabria

“A novella about love in a world of hardship, loss, magic, and recovery. Beagle’s unicorns have never been more bewitching, impossible, and genuine. I cherished every page.”
—Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked and After Alice

[STARRED REVIEW] “Acclaimed fantasist Beagle (Summerlong) sets this charming, lyrical tale of unicorns and love on a poor little hillside farm in the toe of boot-shaped Italy.”
Publishers Weekly

“Beagle once again explores the magic within us and the magic around us, and does it in unmatched style.”
—Kurt Busiek, author of Astro City and The Avengers

“What a wondrous gift it is to have a new unicorn story from Peter S. Beagle! In Calabria is both elegant and earthy . . . Once again Peter Beagle demonstrates why he is one of the greatest fantasy writers of all time!”
—Bruce Coville, author of The Unicorn Chronicles

Praise for Summerlong

“Peter Beagle’s novel Summerlong is a lovely, tantalizing read that moves through a finely-detailed, familiar world into a tale as old and as urgent as language.”
—Patricia A. McKillip, author of Dreams of Distant Shores  and Kingfisher

Praise for A Fine & Private Place

 “One of literature’s most beautiful works about ghostly times and places…told with wit, charm, and a sense of individuality.”
New York Times Book Review

“Both sepulchral and oddly appealing…. [Beagle’s] ectoplasmic fable has a distinct mossy charm.”
TIME Magazine

“One of the great fantasy novels of all time.”
ICCFA Magazine

Praise for Sleight of Hand

“Multiple Hugo and Nebula award–winning Beagle opens readers’ eyes to wonder with his latest collection of 13 short stories. Each piece bridges the rich intersection of fantasy and fairy tale, reality and possibility, exploring predestination, fate, and the power of love through characters that come to vivid, three-dimensional life within a few short pages.”
Library Journal

“Wise, warm and deep.”
The New York Times 

“Demonstrates yet again why [Beagle’s] perhaps the finest fantasy writer at short lengths working today.”

“Not only one of our greatest fantasists, but one of our greatest writers, a magic realist worthy of consideration with such writers as Marquez, Allende, and even Borges.”
The American Culture

Visit the Peter S. Beagle website.