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Marvel 1602 [NOOK Book]

Overview

Neil Gaiman's vision of the Marvel Universe in the year 1602! The year is 1602, and strange things are stirring in England. In the service of Queen Elizabeth, court magician Dr. Stephen Strange senses that the bizarre weather plaguing the skies above is not of natural origin. Her majesty's premier spy, Sir Nicholas Fury, fends off an assassination attempt on the Queen by winged warriors rumored to be in service to a mad despot named Doom. News is spreading of "witchbreed" sightings - young men bearing fantastic ...
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Marvel 1602

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Overview

Neil Gaiman's vision of the Marvel Universe in the year 1602! The year is 1602, and strange things are stirring in England. In the service of Queen Elizabeth, court magician Dr. Stephen Strange senses that the bizarre weather plaguing the skies above is not of natural origin. Her majesty's premier spy, Sir Nicholas Fury, fends off an assassination attempt on the Queen by winged warriors rumored to be in service to a mad despot named Doom. News is spreading of "witchbreed" sightings - young men bearing fantastic superhuman powers and abilities. And in the center of the rising chaos is Virginia Dare, a young girl newly arrived from the New World, guarded by a towering Indian warrior. Can Fury and his allies find a connection to these unusual happenings before the whole world ends? Collects Marvel 1602 (2003) #1-8.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The always inventive Gaiman has concocted an unlikely-but fantastically successful-superhero comic that transfers Marvel's classic characters to the Elizabethan period. Nick Fury is still a lethal government operative, but now he's an adviser to Queen Elizabeth. Her Majesty is equally reliant on magician and doctor Stephen Strange. X-Men mentor Charles Xavier still shepherds a band of mutant teens, only now he's called Carlos Javier, and the mutants are known, and mistrusted, as "witchbreed." Carlos's mysterious nemesis has taken on a new job: grand inquisitor of the Spanish Inquisition. Peter Parker (here "Parquah") is still a confused but well-meaning teenager who has yet to be bitten by a radioactive spider. Placed in a period landscape (rendered in rich, painterly panels by illustrator Kubert and digital painter Richard Isanove), these familiar characters must grapple with the issues of the day, chief among them the machinations of the evil King James of Scotland. And, in classic superhero style, they must save the world. The improbable combination works remarkably well, as the superheroes' strange abilities adapt to Elizabethan culture. This glorious adventure is peppered with Scott McKowen's gorgeous, moody cover-art woodcuts. (Oct.) Forecast: Gaiman's dedicated following will flock to this; script pages and detailed notes and sketches in the back make it an even more attractive package. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
This marvelous oversized hardcover by the acclaimed Gaiman (Sandman) takes the Marvel superheroes and villains of the 1960s-the original X-Men, Daredevil, Dr. Doom, and many others-and places them in the early 17th century. While the Inquisition burns mutants at the stake, English spymaster Nicholas Fury and royal physician Dr. Stephen Strange confer with an ailing Queen Elizabeth about a powerful treasure of the Knights Templar that must be brought to England for safekeeping-and about the strange weather patterns that some feel portend the end of the world. Part of the fun of a book like this is seeing familiar characters in surprising new guises, and Gaiman doesn't disappoint on that score. But he also provides a highly enjoyable story of alliances and betrayals, of misdirection and revelation, with a more sf basis than the fantasies he is known for. (Readers should avoid the introduction, which gives away too much.) Marvel fans will be thrilled with the book, while Gaiman fans are likely to be split, with some finding it too slight-but it's strongly recommended for all collections, for teens and adults. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780785170747
  • Publisher: Marvel Enterprises, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/25/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 55,483
  • File size: 101 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Neil Gaiman
Novelist Neil Gaiman has sent a British businessman tumbling into a fantastic underworld and had a devil and angel comically conspiring to thwart the Apocalypse. He found his biggest success, though, in Death, Dreams and Destruction -- and the four other similarly named siblings who controlled the reins of the human race's emotional impulses in his graphic-novel series The Sandman, a wholesale rejuvenation of graphic fiction that had everyone from Tori Amos to Norman Mailer spinning with, yes, Delirium.

Biography

Neil Gaiman thought he wrote comic books. But a newspaper editor, of course, set him straight.

Back when he was riding the diabolical headwinds of his popular series of graphic novels, The Sandman, the author attended a party where he introduced himself as a comic-book writer to a newspaper's literary editor. But when the editor quickly realized who this actually was -- and the glaze melted from his eyes -- he offered Gaiman a correction tinged with astonishment: "My God, man, you don't write comics, you write graphic novels." Relating the story to theLos Angeles Times in 1995, Gaiman said, "I suddenly felt like someone who had been informed that she wasn't a hooker, that in fact she was a lady of the evening."

Gaiman's done much more, of course, than simply write graphic novels, having coauthored, with Terry Pratchett, Good Omens, a comic novel about the Apocalypse; adapted into hardcover the BBC miniseries Neverwhere about the dark underworld beneath the streets of London; and, inspired by his young daughter, put a horrifying spin on C.S. Lewis' wardrobe doors for Coraline, a children's book about a passageway into a magical, yet malevolent, land.

But it is The Sandman that is Gaiman's magnum opus.

Though he had told a career counselor in high school that he wanted to pen comic books, he had a career as a freelance journalist before his first graphic novel, Violent Cases, was published in England in 1987. DC Comics discovered him and The Sandman was born. Or reborn, actually. The comic debuted back in 1939 with a regular-Joe crime fighter in the lead. But in Gaiman's hands the tale had a more otherworldly spin, slowing introducing readers to the seven siblings Endless: Dream, Death, Desire, Destiny, Destruction, Despair and Delirium (once Delight). They all have their roles in shaping the fates of man. In fact, when Death was imprisoned for decades, the results were devastating. Richard Nixon reached The White House and Michael Jackson the Billboard charts.

Direction from newspaper editors notwithstanding, to Gaiman, these stories are still comic books. The man who shuttled back and forth between comics and classics in his formative years and can pepper his writing with references to Norse mythology as well as the vaudevillian rock group Queen, never cottoned to such highbrow/lowbrow distinctions. Comparing notes on a yachting excursion with members of the Irish rock band U2, the writer who looks like a rock star and Delirium and the rock stars who gave themselves comic-worthy names such as Bono and The Edge came to a realization: Whether the medium is pop music or comic books, not being taken seriously can be a plus. "It's safer to be in the gutter," he told The Washington Post in 1995.

In 1995, Gaiman brought The Sandman to a close and began spending more time on his nongraphic fiction, including a couple of short-story collections. A few years later he released Stardust, an adult fairy tale that has young Tristan Thorn searching for a fallen star to woo the lovely but cold Victoria Forester. In 2001, he placed an ex-con named Shadow in the middle of a war between the ancient and modern dieties in American Gods. Coming in October 2002 is another departure: an audio recording of Two Plays for Voices, which stars Bebe Neuwirth as a wise queen doing battle with a bloodthirsty child and Brian Dennehy as the Angel of Vengeance investigating the first crime in history in heaven's City of Angels.

Gaiman need not worry about defining his artistic relevance, since so many other seem to do it for him. Stephen King, Roger Zelazny and Harlan Ellison are among those who have contributed introductions to his works. William Gibson, the man who coined the term "cyberspace," called him a "a writer of rare perception and endless imagination" as well as "an American treasure." (Even though he's, technically, a British treasure transplanted to the American Midwest.) Even Norman Mailer has weighed in: "Along with all else, Sandman is a comic strip for intellectuals, and I say it's about time."

The gushiest praise, however, may come from Frank McConnell, who barely contained himself in the pages of the political and artistic journal Commonweal. Saying Gaiman "may just be the most gifted and important storyteller in English," McConnell crowned Sandman as the most important act of fiction of the day. "And that, not just because of the brilliance and intricacy of its storytelling -- and I know few stories, outside the best of Joyce, Faulkner, and Pynchon, that are more intricate," he wrote in October 1995, " but also because it tells its wonderful and humanizing tale in a medium, comic books, still largely considered demimonde by the tenured zombies of the academic establishment."

"If Sandman is a 'comic,'" he concluded, "then The Magic Flute is a 'musical' and A Midsummer Night's Dream is a skit. Read the damn thing: it's important."

Good To Know

Some fascinating factoids from our interview with Gaiman:

"One of the most enjoyable bits of writing Sandman was getting authors whose work I love to write the introductions for the collected graphic novels -- people like Steve Erickson, Gene Wolfe, Harlan Ellison, Clive Barker, Peter Straub, Mikal Gilmore, and Samuel R. Delany."

"I have a big old Addams Family house, with -- in the summertime -- a vegetable garden, and I love growing exotic pumpkins. As a boy in England I used to dream about Ray Bradbury Hallowe'ens, and am thrilled that I get them these days. Unless I'm on the road signing people's books, of course."

"According to my daughters, my most irritating habit is asking for cups of tea."

"I love radio -- and love the availability of things like the Jack Benny radio shows in MP3 format. I'm addicted to BBC radio 7, and keep buying boxed CD sets of old UK radio programs, things like Round the Horne and Hancock's Half Hour. Every now and again I'll write a radio play."

"I love thunderstorms, old houses, and dreams."

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    1. Hometown:
      Minneapolis, Minnesota
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 10, 1960
    2. Place of Birth:
      Portchester, England
    1. Education:
      Attended Ardingly College Junior School, 1970-74, and Whitgift School, 1974-77
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 58 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(38)

4 Star

(10)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 58 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2006

    By far the best graphic novel I have read.

    The art, the story, the characters, it all flows so easily off the page. The only problem is I have not been able to find a graphic novel that can stand up to it. So if you like comics I would suggest you read others before you get this far, or you will be disappointed with everything else you read from then on. Once again, Great graphic novel.

    18 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2005

    GREAT BOOK.

    Just as the first reviewer said, this book ties in really well. The ending was a great surprise, and I, too, couldnt put this book down. You see many familiar Marvel characters and many hints as to other characters that will come about one day. Just as my headline says, it is a GREAT BOOK.

    10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2011

    Absolutely incredible...

    I wish Neil Gaiman would write more for the Marvel Universe. Expertly crafted with great twists and reveals to keep you hooked. Highly recommended.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2012

    Fun change of pace for X-men

    Beautifully illustrated with a great story encompassing a number of Marvel characters in surprising form. If you've ever been a fan of the X-men, there's no reason you wouldn't enjoy this revisioning of the universe.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 16, 2012

    Excellent read, beautifull artwork.

    Neil Gaiman is a brilliant story teller. The story is griping and well placed in Elizabethean history. This is such a turbulant and interesting time in history anyway and when you include these wonderful versions of marvel characters it makes a great story that comic fans and noncomic fans will enjoy. The atrwork has a look to it that emulates etching which looks amazing and sets it well into the period. A warning, if you're like me you will want more and you will be disappointed in the next installment. 1602 fantastik Four just isnt as good. It has a different writer and illustrator that dont quite hit the mark and dont integrate the story into the period as well as Gaiman. It is entertaining but not as good. 1602 is one one the best graphic novels I've ever read.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2005

    Incredible

    Everything tied together so well. The twist blew me away and kept me reading. Once I started I couldn't stop reading it. The illustrations were perfect.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2012

    Great read, different...

    Grew up on Marvel. Enjoyed seeing characters in a different venue.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2011

    Very good.

    I dont read many comics but enjoyed this...

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2012

    Amazing book

    I absolutley love this book. Six stars!!!!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2005

    THIS BOOK IS GOOD

    WHAT SO GOOD ABOUT THIIS BOOK IS THAT THE MARVEL HEROS ARE IN A 16TH CENTURY OF ENGALND.BUT THE BOOK IS HARD TO UNDERSTAND BUT THE BOOK IS GOOD

    3 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 28, 2012

    Great graphic novel looked good on my nook but would look GREAT

    Great graphic novel looked good on my nook but would look GREAT on my iPad. Why won't it work on iPad?? I paid for it, why can't I read it on my device of choice???

    2 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2012

    Great take on classic characters

    I have always loved what if stories. This one is awsome and is well worth reading.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2013

    Good read, fantastic art

    Enjoyed the plot and the graphics- (and I'm a Bill Willingham Fables fan, not all graphics make the cut)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2013

    Fantastic!

    I was drawn in by the beautiful illustration and wonderful story. The way Neil brought history together with some of my favorite characters was magic.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2013

    Loved it!

    I have enjoyed reading Neil Gaiman's stories for years and he didn't let me down this time either! Great story.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2013

    Marvel lives on!

    1602- has been a great depiction of history meets comics. Classic adventures and most of all beautifully linked story lines. I hope these forms of comics continue. I was not able to put this down at all. Wonderfully illustrated and well organized! Thank you!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Couldnt put it down!

    Awesome read!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2012

    Neil Gaiman does it again!

    Great read. I recommended this to my husband and I just know he'll love it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2012

    Gaiman is once again brilliant

    As an avid fan of Marvel since the early 80s, I have enjoyed the best it has to offer. 1602 tops it all.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2012

    Just what you'd Expect from Neil Gaiman.

    My only gripe is that I wish it was longer. Gaiman's take on our current world events and 2012 collective unconscious along with strange weather, ties in neatly to the world of Marvel 1602 and provides a context for all to ponder science, history, philosophy, morality, loyalty and folk lore.

    It was a real treat especially getting to read the Marvel Universe through his eyes since I've been a loyal Marvel fan for most of my life.

    Don't miss this.

    'Much is expected from those with much to give'

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 58 Customer Reviews

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