The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes


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The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes

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Editat: gen. 5, 2013, 5:43 pm

The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes - Discussion Thread

Creating a thread for volume 1 in the Sandman series. I have this one currently out from the library and will be starting it tonight. Everyone else, feel free to join at your leisure throughout the year, or just peek in.

Since we haven't decided, as a group, if the individual threads for each volume should be spoiler threads I am going to suggest that any spoilers posted be clearly marked as such. That way it gives people a chance to stop reading the post if they want to avoid spoilers.

Edit to Add: This volume comprises the following titles:

Sleep of the Just
Imperfect Hosts
Dream a Little Dream of Me
A Hope in Hell
24 Hours
Sound and Fury
The Sound of Her Wings

Happy Reading!

gen. 5, 2013, 9:07 am

I am going to jump in shortly. My daughter-in-law has all the volumes so I will borrow the first one from her this week sometime.

gen. 5, 2013, 5:29 pm

Nice to see you here joining the Sandman read!

Editat: gen. 5, 2013, 5:44 pm

I am now at the halfway mark of Preludes and Nocturnes, about to start Passengers. Some initial comment on this so far: the first 20 pages - Sleep of the Just had me slightly pensive as to what I was taking on by reading this one but I no warmed up to and comfortable with the story and the graphics.

My initial problem so far with the story was the way the story tends to zing around from one character/scenario to another without a lot of connectivity for the reader to grab onto. I am far enough in now that it doesn't come across so random in nature but it is not reading material that I can sit down and plow through in one sitting.

I absolutely love the graphics for the various title pages, more so than the artwork for the story itself but I do think the illustrations marry well with the text to convey the story.

These are just some initial thoughts as I continue to read this one.

gen. 6, 2013, 8:13 am

I hope to start this week after I finish my current book but just wanted to say that reading your I intial reactions is interesting! Please don't stop :)

Editat: gen. 8, 2013, 9:29 am

I finished Preludes and Nocturnes yesterday and while not exactly blown away it held my interest to the point that I will definitely continue with the series. While there is a lot of jumping about with the stories by the end of the volume they begin to make sense and become a coherent tale of Dream's quest from his capture onwards.

gen. 8, 2013, 4:45 pm

Well I just if I just finished and can I just say my mid 90s printing is TERRIBLE. Ugh horrid unmatching colours all over tha place. Gah! Right I feel better getting that off my chest I can write a review now :)

Not my favourite volume, too much embedded in the Marvel world (no clue or interest) but it does do horror in a great variety of styles and I have a huge soft for 24 hours, one of my favourite shorts. I think however the last is a great indicator to what the rest of the series is like.

What's everyones favourite episode?

gen. 8, 2013, 4:51 pm

Oops just to continuing waffling Neil highlighted this quote in an interview.. Very apt for Sandman on a major theme

Minor spoiler...

"All Bette's stories have happy endings. That's because she knows where to stop. She's realised the real problem with stories - if keep them going long enough, they always end in death"

gen. 8, 2013, 4:53 pm

Good quote.

gen. 8, 2013, 9:38 pm

I finished it last night. Like Claire, I need to take some time to collect my thoughts before I write a review.

> #6 - I agree. By the end of the volume, the various pieces started to come together and make some sense. Some parts still confuse me, but I am chalking that up to my lack of understanding of the Marvel/DC characters that show up here.

> #7 - I have to say, I was really hoping the artwork would improve, considering it sounds like the rotated through a couple of different artists over the 8 stories. It won't score high for artwork when I do get around to rating it.

As for my favorite story in the volume .... Humm ....let's see..... darn it, I need to think about that some more. I will be back once I figure it out.

gen. 8, 2013, 9:55 pm

If weird coloring or print quality disturb you, try to get a peek at The Absolute Sandman. Those volumes are very expensive but they re-did all the bits that got messed up in printing. So lovely. (Plus, I think the story makes more sense when you have more of it to go on; it was a serial, after all, but there is an overarching plot.)

Editat: gen. 9, 2013, 12:57 am

->4 lkernagh:
Yes, please, continue with "first impressions" posts! It was such a long time since I read it for the first time that I can't possibly remember what I thought - apart from an overall awe, I suppose. For example, I don't find "Sleep of the Just" confusing at all, but it's obviously because I already know who the characters are and what will happen.

->6 hailelib:
It is the messiest of the installments - in the next ones, I think the direction is much clearer.

->7 clfisha:
Had to laugh at this! There are a few places where even the printers must have gagged at what came out. Look at Rachel's house - looks like somebody caked it in thick layers of mud. I really don't think, considering what the material is supposed to be, that anyone was happy with that coming out of the printer. :)

->11 reconditereader:
I've been drooling after those editions for a while now, but can't justify the cash since I already own all of them, gunky colors and all...

My favorite story in this installment must be "Dream a Little Dream of Me," if for no other reason than that Constantine manages to get Dream to show a bit of heart when he's mainly consumed with Revenge. "The Sound of Her Wings" comes in at a close second, because I remember what an impact she made on me when I first read it - she was nothing like I would have thought she would be (especially since I had thought she'd be a man, and one devoid of a sense of humor at that).

gen. 9, 2013, 3:15 am

Yep I think Death was a (good) shock back then & I wonder if she has the same impact today.

gen. 9, 2013, 12:13 pm

Starting this today....

gen. 9, 2013, 4:57 pm

These printing concerns make me glad my first Sandman experience was those Absolute editions.

gen. 9, 2013, 5:08 pm

The Sound of Her Wings is one of my very favorites of all the Sandman stories.

gen. 10, 2013, 12:14 am

Finally managed to finish my review of this one. Full review can be found here: (review here - post 162)

As a copy and paste, here are my thoughts that I included in the review:

While some of the literary allusions and pop culture inclusions worked for me, others didn't - Thank you, Neil, but I really didn't need the song "Sweet Dreams" running through my head again.

I still don't get the purpose of the inclusion of the whole Cain and Abel angle in Imperfect Hosts but I did like how the three witches - sorry Fates.... I mean witches... whatever - were presented.

Dream a Little Dream of Me is my favorite episode in this volume. I like the gritty, sarcastic 'take the world head on' John Constantine character. I also liked how we start to see behind the facade of Morpheus, the Sandman as we glimpse inside his more complex soul here. I also started to notice a somewhat cleaner presentation to the artwork.

I have mixed feelings about A Hope in Hell. I loved the story - absolutely loved it - and completely hated the artwork. This was one of the times where they either just got too experimental with the whole idea or the team wasn't working as a team. Overall effect dampened my enthusiasm for what could have been a perfect story.

Passengers was alright, but nothing to write home about. I found the whole Justice League angle somewhat cheesy and not well done, given the wealth of material they could have borrowed from. Again, back to the weird, experimental artwork that didn't work for me.

24 Hours was too much of a hard core horror for my tastes for me to really want to spend anymore time then I had to to read it. No stellar artwork to make me want to linger over it longer, either.

Sound and Fury was another example, after A Hope in Hell, that trades on a version of the classic theme, good versus evil. For the record, I seriously do not get the dude at the asylum - obviously one of the literary allusions that is lost on me.

The Sound of Her Wings is my second favorite episode in this volume. By this point, I am fascinated with Sandman and the human qualities that Gaiman has given this other than human being. The introduction of Death is well done and a good balance to the Sandman. The artwork is clean and 'uncluttered' compared to the other episodes. The story does feel like the epilogue Gaiman classifies it as and more philosophical in nature.

gen. 10, 2013, 7:11 am

Great review. Neil states there were issues between him and the original artist and so in the end the artist decided to leave. I do think, printing issues aside, it is my least favourite art work but I would really have to look at the absolute volume to comment properly.

Cain & Abel figure heavy as one of the first stories & so appear quite a lot as members or Dreams world. Not sure why they were introduced so early!

Editat: gen. 10, 2013, 8:48 am

The companion fills that one in - Cain & Abel are DC characters from the 70's who were used as "hosts" for the horror story comics (as were Eve with the Raven, the Hecatae and Lucien) hence its a nod, like many things in the first collection to the existing DC universe. I think as Claire has mentioned elsewhere that after issue 8 (when Sandman was given a continuation) Neil felt freer to make Sandman its own thing rather than attempting to fit in. This also explains why Passengers has Justice League stuff and the whole awkward "superheroes in Sandman" which doesn't feel right...

gen. 11, 2013, 9:28 am

Having finshed this yesterday I'd say that it's still my least favourite of the books but am noticing that there's a lot of stuff thats referenced later on which perhaps I'd not really noticed that much before, basically because I'd skip through this volume quickly on the way to getting to the better volumes, however reading in conjunction with Hy Bender's book and deciding to read one a month meant I spent more time with it this time and think I got more out of it.

My favourites were 24 hours and of course The sound of her wings which is when you realise that your on a very special story journey

All the superhero stuff left me a little cold (although Dr Dee seemed to work oddly) and felt a bit anachronistic which is odd considering and oh boy that artwork - especially in the first 3 stories, ugh

gen. 11, 2013, 10:42 am

>17 lkernagh: I really like that review, Lori. I'll have to read the more fulsome one. Great observations.

>20 psutto: That superhero stuff, as I understand it, Pete, was assigned to Gaiman, but he gets further and further beyond it as the series goes on. I had the same reaction as you.

gen. 11, 2013, 9:13 pm

Great discussion everyone! If Gaiman was assigned to include the superheros like Joe mentions, then I guess the finger pointing that that probably wasn't the best of ideas should be directed to .... DC Comics? .... as the publisher. I can see why DC would want the tie-ins to get the readers of Sandman or the other DC comics to pick up more books to follow their favorite characters through the various series. Typical marketing ploy.

Editat: gen. 11, 2013, 11:08 pm

I think Gaiman also included them because he himself is a fan (and the books were indeed commissioned by DC) and wanted a few homages in there. Also, as has been mentioned before, the first few installments are a bit wavering, before he got a firm grip of what the series should be, so they may partially be fillers.

Editat: gen. 12, 2013, 4:03 am

Also it probably make sense to use the DC world as your initial readers will be only be DC/comics fans so you to need to hook them in and then perhaps ease them into a different sort of comic. I can see Constantine fans wanting to have a peek :) I think Sandman broke so much ground it's unreal, in fact event today it's hard to pin point something like Sandman (especially as good as).

Edited to add: Although Sandman is set in the DC so this does continue to happen throughout.

gen. 12, 2013, 5:19 pm

I've just finished "Dream a Little Dream of Me". Being new to the series, I found the first couple of stories a bit confusing with all the new characters, and was hesitant about joining this challenge. However, I really enjoyed "Dream a Little Dream of Me", which felt more like a complete and coherent story to me.

I'm rather new to graphic novels, or at least to modern graphic novels, having read only a few in the past couple of years. However, I was a huge fan of comics (especially Flash, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman) as well as Asterix and TinTin when I was a kid. It's interesting to see the ways the genre has changed.

gen. 14, 2013, 4:59 pm

I finished this today, probably the fourth time I read it. If I remeber correctly, the only voulme that's weaker than this is Dream country, the third one. Agree with what everybody says about the art! My personal lowpoint: Beelzebub as a pair of bug eyes with feet. I mean, COME ON!!!

Still, better than most GN:s out there. Will review today or tomorrow.

>24 clfisha: I kind of like Super hero cameos, when it's well done. The problem with this volume is that (apart from Doctor Destiny, who is rather cleverly woven in I feel, even if this sweaty-toothed incarnation of him really looks crap), it really never feels organic. I seem to recall much better examples from further into the series. The best super heroes of this first volume remain "The amazing Herschel and Betty" :)

One thing I was curious about reading it this time around was the dog who dreams of a past life on the ocean (one of the dreams Morpheus hitches a ride with in "Passengers"). It seems specific to me, but I don't get the allusion. Does anyone know if this refers to something?

gen. 14, 2013, 6:27 pm

This is my personal guess - I've not seen any confirmation - but I've always thought he may be Scuppers, The Sailor Dog - at least that's where my mind went. "Born at sea in the teeth of a gale, the sailor was a dog. Scuppers was his name."

gen. 14, 2013, 7:29 pm

Never heard of Scuppers. Cool, thanks!

gen. 15, 2013, 1:15 am

> 23 and 24 - What you both say makes sense, tapping into the existing audience base.

> 25 - I am also one of the readers that grew up on Tintin and Asterix. The genre is changing, that is for sure!

> 26 - Beelzebub as a pair of bug eyes with feet. I mean, COME ON!!! How did I miss that ?!?! LOL! Superhero cameos work for me when I understand the connection... in a way, I am kind of glad that I didn't have the superhero background to reference to. Yes, it made some parts of the stories a kind of 'huh?' moment, but it didn't detract from my reading like anger at how a known superhero was incorporated into the story would have.

gen. 15, 2013, 2:19 pm

->28 GingerbreadMan:
It makes sense, though, doesn't it? If it was my series, you can be sure Lönnerberga Emil would show up as an imp somewhere. :)

gen. 15, 2013, 3:58 pm

I can't wait for everyone to start on Volume 2, I need help picking up all these references to comics and other sources!

gen. 16, 2013, 10:24 am

my review on my thread

-31 got to wait for me to get to it until beginning of February, although my resolve to read one a month is faltering...

I think I'll move onto the Mike Carey Lucifer series after I complete Sandman

gen. 18, 2013, 8:07 pm

I just picked up Volume 1 from the library. I work this weekend so I'll probably start it next week. Be back.

gen. 21, 2013, 3:19 pm

I read the entire Sandman series (and the Lucifer series) back in 2011 so some of what has been said here doesn't ring a bell for me, but I do recall that I also thought the first volume was the weakest and least enjoyable.

I've read the second volume of the Absolute Sandman as mentioned above by reconditereader and others, and I can attest that it is lovely ~ still waiting to get my hands on the first volume.

This group is making me want to reread the series again.

gen. 21, 2013, 6:11 pm

>26 GingerbreadMan: Agreed, v3 was my least-liked of the bunch, I gave it only 3 stars, while all the rest garnered 4 or 5.

gen. 22, 2013, 7:24 am

33 I love the Lucifer series... hmm maybe a reread is due :)

gen. 22, 2013, 9:59 pm

I've just finished Volume 1 and posted my thoughts on my 2013 Category thread. I'm hooked now and will definitely continue the group read. :)

My favourite stories from this volume were "Dream a Little Dream of Me" and "The Sound of Her Wings." Looking forward to moving on to Volume 2, which I hope to start in February. (I have a few other books I really need to finish first!)

gen. 27, 2013, 4:53 am

> 34, 36

I tried the Lucifer series and couldn't get into it. It just seemed to lack the depth-psychological and mythological imagination and turned into more plot-driven storyline.

I read all the Sandman series last year, but most of them with such rapid suspense that I didn't let it soak in. So this time I read volume 1 and lingered over the beautiful art. I especially loved the poem about Death:

"Death is before me today:
Like the recovery of a sick man,
Like going forth into a garden after sickness.

Death is before me today:
Like the odor of myrrh,
Like sitting under a sail in a good wind.

Death is before me today:
Like the course of a stream,
Like the return of a man from the war-galley to his house.

Death is before me today:
Like the home that a man longs to see,
After years spent as a captive."

When I first discovered Sandman, perhaps in 2009, I only read the first volume, but I photocopied the pages with this poem on them and put it on my wall. Brilliant stuff.

gen. 31, 2013, 6:56 am

Here in the UK there's a tv show on at the moment called "Utopia" about a 'a legendary graphic novel
shrouded in mystery' which has piqued my interest in this format so I am interested to give The Sandman a try

feb. 4, 2013, 1:02 pm

Posting rather late, but hey...

#11 Yep, my Absolute Sandman is definitely a big improvement on my original paperback. So much better quality.

...part of the reason why I'm posting late is that I'm currently stalled at "24 Hours" - sorry clfisha et al, I'm afraid this is the single Sandman story out of the whole bunch that I actively dislike. It's just too, well, gruesome for me. (The reason I'm stalled is that I've been re-reading before going to bed at night and I've had a lot of late nights recently - I don't want that to be the last thing I read before sleeping - not because I get nightmares (I don't really) but because I don't like to go to bed on such a negative note.)

My favourite in the volume - and the point at which, for me, the Sandman series properly kicks off - is "The Sound of Her Wings". Everything prior to that feels more like an introductory tie-in.

On the other hand, I don't mind the DC comic references - I don't get half the allusions, not having been much of a comic reader until I read Sandman (having run out of Neil Gaiman novels to read after Stardust before American Gods was published), however I quite like the glimpses you're given. "Dream a Little Dream of Me" is probably my second favourite in the volume and it has always made me want to go out and explore Hellblazer (although I never seem to get round to it - anyone - is it worth it?).

feb. 4, 2013, 1:47 pm

I finished Preludes and Nocturnes. The volume was uneven to me. Some stories better than others. Some things, I wonder why they are even there, but that may be answered later. "The Sound of Her Wings" and "Dream a Little Dream of Me" were the two I enjoyed best.

Editat: feb. 4, 2013, 11:54 pm

> 40 - It is never too late to post here or on any of the other threads for the group. They are bound to snowball and I will be playing catch up for some of them! I treated "24 Hours" just like anything I want to get over as quickly a possible - like ripping a bandaid off - so it sounds like we had similar reactions to that one.

> 41 - I am really looking forward to seeing how the series opens up and develops. Vol. 1 was an interesting way to start off, and like you say, it is uneven. Vol. 2 doesn't take the scattergun approach to story telling like Vol. 1 so you can look forward to a more even read in that one.

Editat: feb. 5, 2013, 12:26 am

Absolutely not late! My hope is that people will find this Group Read and add to it in the future, beyond just this year.

Yes, Hellblazer is definitely worth it, but it is quite a bit more gruesome than Sandman.

feb. 5, 2013, 4:25 am

>42 lkernagh: volume 3 is 4 unrelated stories so may feel a bit scattergun again

Editat: feb. 5, 2013, 5:29 am

You know I am beginning to wonder when I recommend Sandman, I should ask if they are ok with horror and if not say go start with Volume 2. I mean you would loose something but I wonder how many Volume 1 puts off.

feb. 5, 2013, 5:44 am

#45 It's something I always wonder about when recommending Sandman too. I also think that the first volume isn't very representative of the rest. On the other hand, as you say, I think they would lose something if they didn't read it - it does set up the premise for the story - part of the point being that Morpheus is never the same after his capture (I hope that doesn't count as a spoiler).

I usually end up saying to people that even if they're not blown away by/don't enjoy the first volume, they should power through to at least the next one before giving up on it....

#43 Thank you, I shall look Hellblazer out - any recommendations with where to start?!

feb. 5, 2013, 6:36 am

#40 I'm currently stalled at "24 Hours" - I felt much the same way as you about that one flissp. I don't really do gruesome.

feb. 5, 2013, 12:43 pm

->46 flissp:
I'd start with Volume 1. His origins is in Alan Moore's Swamp Thing, but I don't think that's a necessary place to start.

feb. 21, 2013, 10:29 pm

Well, I just finished Preludes and Nocturnes and I repeat my comment after reading Death: the High Cost of Living...I don't get it. I really don't get it!

I don't know who these people are. I don't know what they are doing. The illustrations are awful!

I do love the graphics on the title pages and I have to say that I did like The Sound of Her Wings which seemed like the first part of the book that actually was a story.

I will keep going though, since a lot of you make reference to the fact that it does become clearer as we go along.

feb. 21, 2013, 10:36 pm

>49 ccookie: ccookie keep reading until volume four at least. The graphics were all over the place in volume one but so were the stories and characters. Many of the characters repeat and start to make sense later. Also, the next three volumes are more in a theme unlike the first. As for the graphics, some may still not be to your liking but the writing and the story telling just get better.

I'm currently in volume four and finally I get why Cain and Abel are in the story.

feb. 21, 2013, 11:23 pm

>50 luvamystery65:
I'll definitely keep going. My son and my daughter-in-law both really like this series!

feb. 27, 2013, 9:23 pm

I think it's really funny how much discussion there is here about the horror in 24 Hours. I remember when I read the story for the first time, I reacted very badly to the gruesomeness of it. This time, after having read even more gruesome stuff by other authors (Vertigo, I'm looking at all your shock jocking), it didn't even faze me....

feb. 28, 2013, 2:52 am

I finished the first volume a couple of days back, and am really happy on finally having started it, the series has been on my tbr-pile for a while, and I really like it. I was really impressed with the first volume, I mean, sure, it's still just beginning and you can tell that they're still just feeling their way around, but I think it does hold a lot of promiss for the volumes yet to come...
I personally didn't find it very gruesome, but I might need to add to that that I'm a long-time horror fan, so the occasional blood and gore doesn't really shock me much. I do really like the athmosphere of the work, mysterious and creepy, even without always relying on gory images.
I personally thought the Justice League could have been left out, they don't really seem to add anything. I did like Constantine and Dr Destiny... And I'm also puzzled by Cain and Abel, but I guess I'll just keep going and see where it all leads.

Anyway, I'll definitely continue with the rest of the series; I'm borrowing them from a friend of mine, so my reading speed will also be partly determined by how often I see him...

feb. 28, 2013, 7:09 am

To be honest, it's not so much the blood and gore as the horrific storyline (people's lives destroyed - but they're all lying to themselves anyway; rape; etc etc)...

març 1, 2013, 1:50 am

I agree, it's the idea that's the worst about "24 Hours" and I think the big shock is when you read it the first time and get what he's up to. It's a little easier to reread since you're a little forewarned what will happen. Still creepy, though!

maig 25, 2013, 6:55 pm

Just finished read vol1. I'm a Gaiman fan (through pterry & Good Omens, then only recently some stories in Fragile Things and then American Gods), so decided to make an effort.
I'm not a comic/graphic novel person. I enjoyed the european kid's comics when I was a kid, but never got the Marvel/DC stuff.

I'm more used to the simple horizontal panels flowing left to right, so this is sometimes hard to follow the narrative, especially because my eyes wander and jump ahead anyway.

All that aside, the story is intriguing. I did my best to keep away from any spoilers and other commentary, so there are probably a lot of references I'm not catching yet. Of course I know Batman, but the JLA/JLI thing is passing me by.

To be frank, sofar I don't yet see why this has become such an icon yet. Perhaps later.

maig 25, 2013, 7:36 pm

> 56 - Hi Jerry, I agree, Gaiman's use of non-linear graphic panes took some getting used to for me as well. The good news is that he does make better use of the standard horizontal panels further into the series.... I just finished reading The Sandman: Vol. 5 A Game of You, so there is hope in that department.

Gaiman does have a way with words and I missed loads of stuff in Vol. 1 so I was very happy the group was able to explain things... and that they continue to explain things as the series progresses.

Have fun with your Sandman reading and look forward to seeing further postings from you on the group threads!

maig 30, 2013, 10:45 pm

>56 JerryMmm:: I found the first volume a challenging read too, but now, I'm on volume 5 and really loving the series. I've found Hy Bender's Sandman Companion to be very useful. I don't like spoilers either, so I usually read the stories first before looking at Bender's comments. After reading the relevant section of the companion book, I often take a second look at certain passages to see all the interesting things I missed the first time.

maig 31, 2013, 11:36 am

> 58

The first time I read Sandman, I was so entranced by the artwork and plot that I didn't even think about the novel itself. So this time around I am beginning to see details, artistic genius, little things I missed before. I'm always floored by Gaiman and amazed when I find people who have read American Gods but don't know about Sandman!

ag. 25, 2013, 2:23 pm

I'm just about to start this series (prompted by an article on Gaiman in the Minneapolis "City Pages" and my recent read of The Graveyard Book ) . . . are there many spoilers in the discussion above? (am trying to avert my eyes :) Will also look for a "General Advice Before Reading" thread . . .

ag. 25, 2013, 3:43 pm

There are some spoilers for vol1, yes. But the nice thing is you can do it by volume, so you don't have to read the whole work before you can participate.

ag. 25, 2013, 3:59 pm

A lot of people have been posting after they read each volume but I don't find there are many spoilers. Whether to read the treads before or after reading each volume might depend on how sensitive you are to spoilers.

Editat: ag. 25, 2013, 7:50 pm

I think most of the comments posted in each of the volume threads are more focused on general observations around the artwork and the plot of the various stories but I second Tricia's comment that if you are concerned about spoilers (like I am) then I recommend holding off reading the threads until after you have read the volume.

ETA: Looking forwards to seeing new comments on the Sandman stories! Everyone seems to find different aspects that attract them (or repel them).

Editat: set. 22, 2013, 11:02 pm

(SPOILER update on 9/22/13): Apologies that I didn't originally list this as containing SPOILERS (though they are rather vague) . . . Will try to better in future :)

Finally got started tonight . . . almost through Sleep of the Just. I'll admit I was a bit concerned/put off by the fact that the two girl characters were put to sleep whereas the two boy characters couldn't sleep . . . and could have done without the rape of Unity while asleep . . . but then it seemed that the sleeping sickness was more of an equal opportunity affliction . . . so we'll see where it goes.

(As someone who lives with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome I find it interesting how many books involve children/young people with various "sleeping sicknesses" . . . not sure exactly what this means or how I feel about it . . .)

Back to reading . . .

set. 1, 2013, 4:10 pm

Interesting observation. I never really paid attention to the two girl characters being put to sleep and the two boy characters being unable to sleep. Different readers do bring a different perspective to the stories and it makes sense that you would pick up on that.

Editat: set. 2, 2013, 12:21 am

I didn't pick up on that either and aren't sure if it indicates anything particular - let us know if anything occurs to you. Interesting. I've only read this one and Sacks' Awakenings that deal with the sleeping sickness - such an odd thing.

My old boss had fibromyalgia, which I understand has symptoms in common with CFS - terrible stuff, that!

set. 3, 2013, 10:40 pm

One other that I loved is The Shadow Thieves by Anne Ursu . . . though I had to admit that when I first read it I didn't make the CFS connection to the young people being very tired all the time . . . but later when I read/heard the author talk about that connection it made total sense to me . . .

BTW, Shadow Theives is the first of a trilogy written for young people that incorporates classical mythology . . . I loved all of them!

set. 4, 2013, 1:14 pm

Looks interesting - reminds me of Percy Jackson, though. I wonder how similar they are.

set. 4, 2013, 6:23 pm

I read these first . . . then tried to read a couple of the Jackson series and didn't like those at all . . . too much "kill one monster after another" for me . . . Ursu's books have more to the storyline than that (and they don't assume you already know mythology, so they are teaching you along the way) . . . besides, her main character is red-haired girl (which I was also when I was younger :) . . . so much more appealing to me . . .

I think I reviewed both Shadow Thieves and the first of the PJ series on LT . . . if you're interested.

set. 4, 2013, 6:58 pm

It is funny how differently we approach our reading - loving LT for proving that over and over; part of why I liked Percy was that I wasn't being taught the myths - I grew up reading those. :) I'll take a gander at Ursu's books, though, as I won't turn down a potentially good read.

set. 19, 2013, 2:54 am

> 64, 65

I have noticed a trend in Gaiman's novels (graphic and otherwise) to have some amount of objectification of women. Having just read volume one again, I noticed the unnecessary half-naked demon females in hell. The only non-young, non-attractive female in the volume is "Mad Hattie."

I read all of these last summer and I'm excited to get back into them. I remember the hypnotic effect they had over me. I actually wanted to go to sleep and enter the dream world. The second time around I notice the details. Gaiman's art is gratuitously gorgeous; lots of little sidebars with ornate decorations that add to the tale.

I could not read the chapter set in the cafe with the lunatic. It was too disturbing the first time around. I didn't need to see that again.

set. 19, 2013, 6:28 am

I wonder if its partly what comics artists do (without thinking? following orders?) in the that there is always luscious women to gracing the stories. I suspect writes don't push back that much.. no idea how much control they.

set. 19, 2013, 9:31 am

> 71 - I had a lot of trouble with the story 24 Hours too. A little too hard core violent/disturbing for me.

set. 19, 2013, 6:32 pm

Before this I've only read The Graveyard Book so this is quite a bit different . . . I did finish Volume One . . . the sister character is rather interesting . . . we'll see how things evolve in Volume Two . . .

set. 21, 2013, 9:23 pm

#71 "I have noticed a trend in Gaiman's novels (graphic and otherwise) to have some amount of objectification of women". Really? That's not something I've noticed - any examples (beyond the visual in the comics, which as clfisha says is probably more down to the artist than Gaiman, although I know he had some input)? Not a leading question, I'm genuinely interested...

On a related and, in my opinion more important issue though, generally, personality-wise, I've found that he has a pretty broad spectrum of characters, with women/girls coming off just as well (or as badly) as the men/boys, by which I mean, there are some pretty nasty or weak willed characters of both sexes, but plenty of strong willed and complex people who are neither good or bad - and in being more complex, they're all the more believable (and interesting).

set. 28, 2013, 1:31 pm

> 75

I definitely agree, flissp. I appreciate that he can make even the most minor character a complex personality.

I just read volume 2 and it is better - not EVERY woman is young and gorgeous and partially/fully unclothed in at least one panel, lol.

jul. 19, 2017, 9:49 pm

>43 -Eva-: Absolutely not late! My hope is that people will find this Group Read and add to it in the future, beyond just this year.

Ha! I'm only at this point in the discussion, but I was pointed in the direction of this group, as I just finished reading this volume.

I'm not a fan of the superheroes, so I didn't know many of the characters, and was confused (like many others, it seems!). My favourite story was the one about Death. My next-favourite was the Diner horror story. I found I was more interested in any part of the volume that focused on the humans.

jul. 19, 2017, 9:52 pm

And I do plan to continue the series. Although, with me and any series, it may be a year or more before I get to the next one!!! We'll see! I am going to join this group as a reminder to read through each thread as I finish each volume.

jul. 19, 2017, 10:15 pm

>78 LibraryCin: Nice to see that this forum is still active. :)

jul. 20, 2017, 7:04 pm

>79 mathgirl40: Well, at least temporarily. :-)