Mar 9, 2011

Mr. Croup and Mr. Vandemar

Every time Mr. Croup and Mr. Vandemar came on scene, I cringed. Their character portrayals are so creepy and well done, that I've read Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman several times to study how he made me feel how I felt about his two villains.

Any of the rest of you read Neverwhere?

It is easy to empathize with the main character, Richard, and get lost in Neil's nightmarish world. I enjoyed this story. A lot. Very imaginative and different.

Neverwhere uses the plot devise of falling into a fantasy world from our world. Other famous examples are Alice in Wonderland, Narnia, Wizard of Oz, Phantom Tollbooth, the Thomas Covenant series and many, many more. I think the idea of doorways to other worlds is intrinsically appealing. Fantasy is escape. Being able to walk into a different reality, well, there's nothing more escapish than that.

Neverwhere's underground world is dark and garish. Yet it is also wonderful and teaches us things about the actual world and our natures.

Neil is a great story teller. He catches my interest very easily and holds onto it. I've been reading Fragile Things, which is a collection of his short stories, and have been enjoying it, too. His most well-known novel is probably, American Gods. You can learn more about Neil and his vast body of work here:

What lessons did you take from Neverwhere and Gaiman's fantasy underworld? If you haven't read Neverwhere, what is your favorite fantasy world reachable from our ordinary world?