“Have you ever got everything you ever wanted? And then realized it wasn’t what you wanted at all?”
I love Terry Pratchett, and when I saw that he had co-written with Neil Gaiman, I thought I’d check him out as an author. Cause if he has my mate Sir Terry’s approval, he should be good enough for me.
It’s a really interesting premise (much like Adventures Underground) of a mirror image of the reality of London, a London with fantasy elements, but this developes the idea much further, with the lead character slipping through the cracks and discovering ‘London Below’, the place below the sewers and train tunnels, where rats have kingdoms and “Night is still an idea that is terrifying”.
Basically, Richard Mayhew has a good life. A good job, a nice fiancee, a nice apartment. Until one evening on his way home, he happens across a girl called Door bleeding. Then everything gets a little existential.
There are some fabulous characters – the Angel Islington, the Marquis Carabas but the main character Richard Mayhew leaves a lot to be desired. He is a good foil, but a 2D foil nonetheless. It is very funny in places, and I loved the personification of tube stations.
I felt it was a little uneven in places; it wavered over detailing to not enough, but it has whet my appetite enough to get The Graveyard Book which has had some stunning reviews. From researching, Neil Gaiman’s background is more graphically based, possibly hence the uneveness, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.
I’ve also purchased the BBC mini-series of Neverwhere from which this book comes, just in time for the snow. It’s ok, I’ve got my heater, the hubby and the cat. I just need to convince my boss I can work from under my duvet!
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