Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Gaiman, Neil. 1997. (2003 my edition) Neverwhere.

"The night before he went to London, Richard Mayhew was not enjoying himself."

My thoughts on Neverwhere. I liked it. It was good. It was interesting. But I didn't love, love, love it the way I loved Stardust. I think that may be in part because of the urban setting. The underground-urban setting. I had a harder time suspending my disbelief. Which may strike some as strange, but I am what I am. I liked the characters. I cared what happened to them. But I wasn't swept off my feet by the story or the storytelling like I was with Stardust. I enjoyed it. I would definitely still recommend it. Where as with Stardust I could see myself rereading it every year or so and feeling the need to own a copy...with Neverwhere, I don't have that compulsion.

It's the story of a man, Richard, who through chance (or destiny) is drawn into a strange underworld London. A London that most never see, most never venture into. A place where the strange, the unbelievable, happens every day and every night. The characters are for the most part eccentric. Richard is most drawn to Lady Door. The star of the show. It is her life that is in danger. It is her life that they are trying to protect. Her mystery they're trying to solve. Richard doesn't know what to believe these days. He can't deny the strange world that he's in, but he's still a little unsure of everything.

As I said, I liked it but I didn't love love love it. But it was good.


© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


chrisa511 said...

Well I'm glad you thought it was good :) I think it really all depends on what type of tale you like better when it comes down to your favorite of Gaiman's stuff. Personally, I tend to like darker stories, and I preferred Neverwhere over Stardust...though I loved both of them. Glad you read this one!

Becky said...

Chris, I think it was a timing issue. If I hadn't just read Stardust. If I had been reading it for R.I.P. instead. If I had read it all in one sitting instead of four or five mini ones. But I did like it. Maybe it'll teach me to space out my reading in the future. Not try to read so many of one author's books in a month.

Carl V. Anderson said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it. I think in part is still bears up part of my theory that Stardust and Neverwhere and one's thoughts on them depend a lot on which one is read first. Not entirely obviously but I think it does have a bearing on the experience.

Anonymous said...

I did like it but definitely preferred American Gods. I have yet to read Stardust but am looking forward to getting around to it soonish. I know what you mean as well about reading a lot by one author in a single month. I always find that with people like Terry Pratchett I have to space his work out or it gets too samey.

Framed said...

Neverwhere was my third Gaiman book so that may be why I didn't love it either. But I really enjoyed it and thoroughly appreciated the creativity involved. Good Omens (Gaiman is a co-writer) is still my favorite, but I have a couple more of his books on the shelf. Who knows?

Arsyn said...

Neverwhere; definitely good, but I agree, not the best. As for myself, I prefer the twisted humor and coin tricks of American Gods to any other Neil Gaiman book.