I’ll explain. I’ve read a fair amount of Gaiman’s novels and, of course, Sandman in up there for me as one for the greatest pieces of literature ever committed to the page.
Apart from Sandman though, I’ve always been a bit meh about his stories. Or not the stories so much as the delivery. He’s a great writer and I love his characterisation but… I feel like I should love him more.
So he’s become a running joke in our household, with Mr Bee trying to force feed me more and more Gaiman until I submit to loving him as much as he does.
This. Well, this was… brilliant!
I won’t waffle on too much about the Adventures of Richard Mayhew and Friends. Chances are you already know, you may be a long-term cheerleader for Neil Himself, as many of my friends are.
If you don’t already know then I don’t want to ruin it for you. You should read it though.
The brief synopsis is this: something happens one evening while Richard Mayhew is on his way to dinner with his new fiance. This something changes both their lives forever.
Turns out there’s a whole other London below the one we know; London Below. Rat infested, dark and twisted, this London is home to all manner of creatures including the wholly unpleasant Mr Croup and Mr Vandemar. There’s Door the waifish ‘door opener’ and the Marquis de Carabas, a charming but roguish chancer who may or may not be untrustworthy.
Then there’s Hunter and Old Bailey, The Serpentine Sisters, the Velvets and Hammersmith; all of whom may just change the way you view the underground map forever.
So, to Neil I say, thank you for this. It was amazing. It reminded me of Sandman in some ways and made me fall in love with your imagination all over again.
To Mr Bee: you win. This was great.
- Publisher: Headline Review (19 Sep 2005)
- ISBN-10: 0755322800
- ISBN-13: 978-0755322800
- Paperback belonging to my husband