Reading Level: Adult
Genre: Speculative Fiction/Anthology
Length: 368 pages
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Release Date: October 27, 2015
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: Librarything’s Early Reviewer Program for Review
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this book to review through Librarything’s Early Reviewer program. This is Gaiman’s third short story collection and it was a good one that covered a wide breadth of genres. I honestly don’t have a ton to say about it, if you enjoy Gaiman’s writing style you will most likely enjoy this collection. I am a huge fan and enjoyed it, although I had read some of the stories previously.
There are a broad range of stories in here as well as some poems. Some stories are very short and some reach nearly novella length. They cover a very broad variety of topics, although the majority of the stories have some sort of eerie or disconcerting thread through them.
For those who are huge Gaiman fans (like myself) you should be aware that many of these stories have been published elsewhere, so you may have already read them. I own the individual books for both The Sleeper and the Spindle (incredibly well done fairy tale retelling) and The Truth is a Black Cave in the Mountains (another well done story). I had also already listened to Click Clack the Rattlebag on Audible (this was a well done creepy Halloween story).
I think my favorite of the bunch was the one where Gaiman did a story for each month of the year; each stories was inspired by tweets from his fans. I also really enjoyed “And Weep, Like Alexander” which was a funny little story about a man who un-invents annoying things. “Nothing O’Clock” was another fun story that was set in the Doctor Who universe (I am a huge Doctor Who fan and Gaiman’s writing style works very well for a Doctor Who story).
I enjoyed many of the stories and believe Gaiman is exceptional at crafting short stories. This is another of those books where I think the stories would have made a bigger and more long lasting impression on me if I had read one or two of them a night. Since I was reading this for review I instead read many stories each night and it was a lot to digest. There weren’t really any that stood out as being spectacular, but they were all well done.
Overall a very solid collection of short stories by Gaiman. They are all very well written and cover a wide breadth of topics. Definitely pick this up if you are a Neil Gaiman fan; I would also recommend to fans of quirky and eerie short story collections.