Review: The Sandman, Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes – Neil Gaiman.

gaimanI can’t deny I’m a big fan of Gaiman’s books, but had never read any of his comic book work (excluding Batman). But then, in August, I went to see him talk (five minutes from my flat – hurrah!) at the Edinburgh Book Festival about the Sandman series, and I’d since been intrigued.

But I had also been broke, and upon Amazon-ing discovered that the series is… quite expensive. So, thanks to a Christmas voucher and a wee bit of a discount, I now have the first Volume. And I now have to pine until I can get my hands on the second.

At first, it felt like a bit of a slow burner, and then I soon kicked myself for being remotely dubious. Like his way with words in person, I find the story he tells to be dark and twisted, but completely wonderful. The pacing is far more grabbing here than in some of his books, and by the end of each I felt completely consumed.

I still think Sleep of the Just has to be one of the best kick offs to a series I’ve read, with the capture of Dream being intriguing. It could have been a one-off, but instead hooks you in. It moves on to have heavy Batman/DC references & fleeting cameos and that was, eh, a bit off-putting, but you deal with it. I did like the inclusion of Arkham, though, so I can’t be all that against the inclusion.

I just enjoyed the whole journey of trying to reclaim his past possessions, and the subsequent plot of John Dee. The only part I wasn’t huge on (at first) was the introduction of Death, although having heard Gaiman talk about his initial concept, it made complete sense. The art is so good, the images he creates are brilliant.

So, despite a few little things that irked me, I thought this was brilliant. I’m kind of mad that I only have the first volume. Anyone want to lend me the next few? I promise I’ll send them back!



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