Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman

Easily one of my favourite Neil Gaiman books – so much so that just thinking about it makes me wish he had a new novel out right now. I’d read it immediately.
In Neverwhere readers are given a brilliant mix of comic, dark, surreal and fantastical elements as they follow the out-of-his-depth Richard Mayhew through the mysteries and horrors of the otherworldly ‘London Below’ in his efforts to save the mysterious girl known as ‘Door.’
Now, I know it’s a cliche, but I found it tough to put this down. Really tough. I generally annoyed those around me with my distracted state and I think everyone was pretty happy when I finished it and was able to listen properly again.
Part of what enthralled me most was the way Gaiman interwove the ‘real’ world with the magical one below, it was always entertaining and often surprising. I didn’t expect the oddities of the Floating Market or Marquis de Carabas’ endless supply of cleverness. And I didn’t expect the wonderful evocation of loneliness the book achieved when Richard was ‘above’ either. Certainly there was action and suspense, but Neverwhere is often a touching story too – Gaiman has a knack for getting to the core of a character very quickly, often through his wit and use of dialogue.
Reading it  again I do wish I’d been to London so I could experience the extra layers of meaning he evokes when using (in an amusing way) recognisable places like Earl’s Court or ‘Night’s Bridge’. Of course, it’s not a requirement to enjoying the story and in the meantime I can always read it again, right?

Five stars indeed.

8 responses to “Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman”

  1. Make me so sad I am a poor student with no time to read properly… the only reason I am waiting for the summer to come…

    1. I know what you mean, Dhyan – I was lucky I was able to re-read that over Christmas – now, back to work sadly!

    1. Fantastic, thank you!!

  2. I was in London two months ago, now I want to go back, and under! Will definitely keep my eyes open for this one.

    1. Happily envious, Mark! 🙂
      I think you’d get a nice bit more out of the book then – but truly it’s worth it without having been there. Try get the author’s expanded edition if you do, should have the same cover. Had a lot of fun reading ‘Neverwhere’ very much recommended!

  3. My favourite of his works. Have you checked out the miniseries? It’s surprisingly decent.

    1. No, but I’d love to – I definitely will one day, great to hear that it is good. Apparently the series came first? I didn’t know that before picking up the book.

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