Strong, regal, beautiful, and innocent, there is no more fascinating a creature in both folklore and pop culture than the majestic unicorn. Known for its preference for solitary living in the depths of enchanted forests, the unicorn's mysteriousness and lore have been imbedded by humanity's inability to catch a thorough glimpse of its full grandeur. The lucky few who have seen it tend to be other magical creatures themselves; the only way to capture one is to use a young female virgin as bait for she is the only one who has a gentle enough touch to entice the beast from hiding.
In medieval times, unicorns were a symbol of chivalry and aristocracy, so it's no surprise that they became the ideal companion for gallant knights, and eventually, the symbol of Jesus in many illuminated bestiaries. They also came to represent unknown danger in the ancient city of Persepolis in 515 BCE, a belief immortalized on the British coat of arms with the unicorn shown as the mighty lion's fiercest opponent. This feud also appears in a traditional English nursery that was the origin of the quarrel between The Lion and the Unicorn in Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking-Glass.
It wasn't long before a piece of the unicorn's mane, blood, and horn became hot commodity in man's pursuit for immortality. Today, unicorns can be found in modern tales like Harry Potter, television shows like My Little Pony, colorful Lisa Frank-inspired fashion and makeup trends, and must-have food crazes like the Unicorn Frappuccino and bagels.
Divided into four sections: flora and fauna; fashion and beauty; arts and culture; home, food, and entertaining—The Unicorn Handbook is the ultimate compilation and guidebook filled with step-by-step projects and recipes throughout. Learn how to make your very own unicorn tail loop braid or unicorn dust for that extra sparkle in your life. There are recipes to make a plum cake straight from the world of Alice in Wonderland and tips on how to throw the most unique garden party ever (complete with instructions on how to make unicorn horn table favors and utensils). And there's also an exclusive interview with Peter S. Beagle, the author of the classic tale The Last Unicorn.
Carolyn Turgeon has been editor in chief of Enchanted Living (formerly Faerie Magazine) since 2013. She is the author of The Faerie Handbook (Harper Design, 2017) and The Mermaid Handbook (Harper Design, 2018) as well as five novels: Rain Village, Godmother, Mermaid, The Next Full Moon, and The Fairest of Them All. Her books have been optioned for film by Sony Pictures, Random House Films/Focus Features, and Gaumont Film Company, and published in the United Kingdom, Brazil, China, Japan, Korea, Russia, Spain, and Portugal. She has published short fiction in Fairy Tale Review and the anthology Haunted Legends (Tor, 2010) as well as essays in Allure, the Hairpin, and the New Inquiry, among other publications. She lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Learn more at www.carolynturgeon.com.