Tuesday, March 31, 2009

the sandman -- two volumes by neil gaiman

the sandman, volume 1: preludes & nocturnes introduces readers to a dark and enchanting world of dreams and nightmares -- the home of the sandman, master of dreams, and his kin, the endless. this first collection of neil gaiman's multi-award-winning title introduces key themes and characters, combining myth, magic and black humor.

in the sandman, volume 2: the doll's house rose walker finds more than she bargained for -- long lost relatives, a serial killers' convention, and, ultimately, her true identity. the mast of dreams attempts to unravel the mystery, unaware that the hand of another, far closer to home, is pulling the strings.

dear neil gaiman

before i begin, let's first give a huge round of applause for your illustrators -- dave mckean (perhaps the only artist who i feel depicts the madness in my head), mike dringenberg, malcom jones III, chris bachalo, michael zulli, steve parkhouse, and sam keith. bravo!

the first two volumes are utterly awesome. truly. i never thought i'd be a "comic" reader. sure graphic novels can be fun, but it's like a new thing for a reader like me. and i never thought i'd go seek out "graphic novels" that were actually comics when they first came out. but oh. my. god. this series is fabulous. the queue at the new york public library is long, so it's going to take me quite some time to finish it. i devoured the first two volumes in three days. somehow the insane art and the story and the characters -- it works. and i don't know how or why. but it does.

the art is a wild blend of color and style and forms. you'd think it would be rough, confusing, a mess. except, it's not. i love when the panes slowly morph into some new style of illustration and it so perfectly fitting. i think i literally mumbled, "damn!" a number of times while reading these two collections.

i am in awe. i have no idea how one goes about writing a comic/graphic novel. call me and tell me how you do it. the only thing i can nitpick in the series is the grammatical errors in the text. but! i get it. this is from the 1990s, i doubt vertigo wasn't up to making sure the grammar was up to the top notch standards. and the time constraint of turning out a monthly comic (akk!). and let's add in the hand lettering and it's cool. it does inspire me to want to see if i can go copyedit for vertigo. put in a good word for me, would you? 

i'm almost tempted to leave my current cushy publishing gig to become a graphic novel/comic book editor. if anyone could get me to do it, it's you neil. the suspense for volume 3 is killing me. i'll die in sweet anticipation. anything for you and your books.

dutifully yours,
a lone reader

post script: it's pretty obvious that i have a wicked crush on you, right? 

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