For the first time since 1996, Destiny, Death, Dream, Despair, and all the other denizens of bestselling author Neil Gaiman's Endless world are back! This beautiful, haunting hardcover finds Gaiman's dark visions illuminated by a battalion of graphic art legends: P. Craig Russell, Barron Storey, Milo Manara, Frank Quitely, Miguelanxo Prado, and Bill Sienkiewicz. It's a dream lineup, filled with collaborators who add an extra element of the macabre to Gaiman's uniquely chilling vision.
What makes Gaiman's "Despair" so haunting is the disturbed quality of the author's vignettes -- oscillating between courthouse cogency and madhouse incoherence -- and Barron Storey's phenomenal artwork. Storey commands multiple styles to render human misery: pencil, charcoal, watercolors, humanistic and geometric, the kind of works Amnesty International exhibits as evidence of mental and physical torture, with the same scary impact. Rest assured, the Sandman is back -- and he will rob you of sleep, not deliver it!
Now that he's a bestselling fantasy novelist, Gaiman returns to the comics series that made his reputation with this new volume of seven gorgeously illustrated stories. Gaiman specializes in inventing fantastic allegories for the quotidian, in a voice that casually shifts between uneasy realism and Borgesian grandeur. In Sandman cosmology, "The Endless" are seven immortal siblings who personify abstract concepts: Dream, Death, Destiny and so on. This work devotes a story to each of them, drawn in distinctly different styles by an all-star lineup of American, British and European cartoonists and fine artists. Gaiman is famous for writing to his artists' strengths, and he does so here. P. Craig Russell draws the surreal fantasia "Death and Venice" with the opulent brio of his opera adaptations. "What I've Tasted of Desire" is a darkly sexual fable, painted by Milo Manara in the style of his more X-rated work. A couple of the stories find Gaiman working in a more experimental mode than usual, notably "Fifteen Portraits of Despair," a set of anecdotes and prose poems accompanied by Barron Storey's tormented, abstract drawings and paintings. Longtime comics fans will notice plenty of inside jokes in "The Heart of a Star," but most of this book is a red carpet-or perhaps a Persian rug-rolled out for Gaiman's prose readers to see his visions turned into lush, dramatic images. (Oct.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
With a new collection of seven stories, Gaiman returns to the world of Sandman (Dream) and his Endless siblings-Death, Desire, Despair, Delirium, Destruction, and Destiny . A young army soldier returns to Venice, where, as a boy, he had encountered Death, whom he meets once more as she deals with a Count who had cheated death. Kara bargains with Desire to ensnare the chief's son, using the gifts from Desire for revenge when her love is taken from her. Dream brings his love, Killala, to meet his family at a cosmic conference before Time-and suffers his first betrayal. Chapter 4, subtitled "Fifteen Portraits of Despair," uses art and words to describe despair in various formats ranging from vignettes to descriptive statements such as "It is a writer, with nothing left that he knows how to say." Delirium rounds up a rescue squad of crazy people to help a catatonic girl recover. A young woman who works on an archeological dig off the coast of Sardinia, which has uncovered long-buried artifacts from the future, meets Joe and his kooky sister (Destruction and Delirium), who warn her away. And blind Destiny walks always in his garden, holding a book that is the Universe. Most stories include more overt and graphically portrayed sex than in previous Sandman volumes. The story of Kara and Desire shows people engaged in sexual acts throughout, and because of it, most libraries will most likely want to keep it in their adult collections, where older teen fans will find it. This collection is not one to introduce new fans to the series, but it will appeal to those fans who have read all the volumes and want more. Libraries that already own previous volumes will want this striking book as well. VOYACodes: 4Q 2P S A/YA G (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Adult-marketed book recommended for Young Adults; Graphic Novel Format). 2003, Vertigo/DC Comics, 160p., Ages 15 to Adult.
After several years away from comics, celebrated writer Gaiman (American Gods; Coraline) returns to the dark fantasy series that made him a sensation: the Eisner, Harvey, and World Fantasy Award-winning Sandman. This oversized volume features seven stories, one devoted to each member of the Endless, the ancient and powerful family to which the Sandman (a.k.a. Dream) belongs. All are masterfully illustrated, each by a different artist, covering a wide variety of styles, from the mainstream DC look of Glenn Fabry's illustration in the chapter "Destruction" to the nightmarish collage of Barron Storey's "15 Portraits of Despair." Bill Sienkiewicz's multistylistic mastery, from jagged black-and-white sketches to lushly colored realistic paintings, is perfectly matched to "Delirium." Italian artist Milo Manara, famed for his erotic work, is also exactly right to draw one woman's encounter in "Desire." The story focusing on Dream himself, marvelously painted by Spanish artist Miguelanxo Prado, touches on-of all things-the backgrounds of two of DC's most famous superheroes. Gaiman's tales are deep, subtle, multilayered, and powerful, and this book is sure to delight his legions of fans. With nudity and sex, this is one for adult collections-for which it is absolutely essential. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.