My rating: 3 of 5 stars to Neil Gaiman‘s Neverwhere, a fantasy full of quirky characters and commentary on society, published in 1996. This was another book group selection (not mine), but by someone who has very good taste in books.
I’d never read Gaiman before, but he seems to be immensely popular. We read it in 2009, many years after it first hit print, but still at the cusp of my interest in fantasy books. I think it was too much of a fantasy for me, as I tend to need some rules or boundaries, and I couldn’t tell what was real here. Seems it’s all real, but for a newbie at the time, I was lost.
Essentially, a man wandering around London, falls through a hole of sorts… into fantasy world… and when he returns, everyone has basically forgotten who he was. Right from that point… I’m not sure what’s real anymore. But I stuck with it… and he meets tons of people after him, including a mouse (yes a mouse)… Door (yes, that’s her name) is his new friend, and she’s helping him thru this new world, but then she disappears. Very complex. Door must stand for something. I might consider re-reading this one again to see if I’m more open-minded about it.
And this refers to my understanding of the book and the graphic above about “I’m lost and returning…” Never happened.
1. The characters are wonderful. Imaginative. Vivid. Very likable, but also a tad confusing. Was this Peter Pan in Neverland??????? Alice in the Wonderland?
2. London is very dark. Scary dark.
3. Life is not what it seems. Don’t ever try to be a Good Samaritan and rescue someone. NOT WORTH IT!!!!
4. Gaiman is a master at intense visuals.
5. I’m not as creative as I think I am.
So… read this if you love fantasy. If you don’t, I wouldn’t chance it. This was a very “out there” type book for me… though it had many funny and wonderful parts.
Good Luck if you cross that one…
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