Starting with this poem, which I’d first read in a Diana Wynne Jones novel, I spent the better part of a fourteen hour journey reading another simply amazing book by Neil Gaiman; Stardust.
When I was reading Stardust, I was actually transported back to my childhood. It is a fairy tale for adults, and a great one at that!
“A philosopher once asked, “Are we human because we gaze at the stars, or do we gaze at them because we are human?”
Pointless, really…”Do the stars gaze back?” Now that’s a question.”
Stardust is a fantasy novel written by Neil Gaiman in 1998. It is quite different from his usual books, written in a more traditional fairy-tale-like style.
Stardust is the story of a young man named Tristan Thorn. He lives in Wall, a village situated on the border of our world and the realm of Faerie. The village is separated from Faerie by a long and high wall, which no one crosses. One day a distant star falls down to the earth, and Tristan Thorn sets out into Faerie to retrieve this star for the one he loves. But as fairy tales go, this adventure isn’t very easy, and Tristan Thorn certainly isn’t the only one looking for the star.
“It was a violet, and it chinkled and sang as he held it, making a noise similar to that produced by wetting a finger and rubbing it, gently, around a wineglass.”
I absolutely adored the way this tale was written. I was reminded of a quote from Stephen King’s On Writing – you must be able to describe things in a way that will cause your reading to prickle with recognition. I think Neil Gaiman does just that.
I liked getting to experience another one of Gaiman’s amazingly unique worlds. Faerie is nothing like you expect and everything that you want all at the same time! It is a wonderful play on all the cliches in fantasy. Not to mention, that subtle, makes-you-chuckle humour made this book all the more enjoyable. It’s another Gaiman novel that I’d recommend in a heartbeat!