A little while ago (I can’t remember how long now, time is going by in such a blur… two, three months? Anyway.) I signed up for my very first blogger book swap, organized but the lovely Stephany! I love trying new genres of books & couldn’t wait to see how it would go.
Last month I was paired up with Emily and we found out that we had incredibly similar taste in books but at the same time had our own favorite genres. She mailed me over one of her favorite titles, a fantasy novel by bestselling author Neil Gaiman called Neverwhere.
I had previously heard really fantastic things about Neil Gaiman but there are just so many amazing novels to read out there that I really never thought twice about picking up one of his. I read some mild fantasy novels (especially young adult/teen stuff because I often find that adult fantasy and science-fiction can be a bit too much for me) but I told Emily I was open to trying it since she loved it so much.
The story revolves around a man named Richard Mayhew who moves to London and basically starts a life there. He meets a woman and gets engaged, has a 9-5 job, the whole every day life kind of thing. One day as he is rushing to a dinner with his fiancee, Jessica, he sees a little girl bleeding on the sidewalk and feels compelled to stop and help her. Although Jessica begs him to keep moving otherwise they’ll be late, Richard let’s her go and chooses to help the little girl instead.
What starts out as a simple gesture turns into a whirlwind adventure with the lovely young girl, Door, who turns out to be a very powerful person in London’s underworld. The two characters embark on a journey to solve a mystery and encounter many friends, creatures and very strange people along the way.
It took me about two weeks to get through the book because I was so caught up with school and life, but every time I picked it back up I fell back into this entirely new world and found myself completely captivated. I have to admit that by simply reading the back of the book I probably wouldn’t have EVER read it, but I’m so glad Emily chose this one for me. It was a novel that’s completely out of my usual reading zone and I ended up really loving it. Neil Gaimain has such a witty way of writing his characters and his story development.
I’m definitely going to look into his other fictional works- I really enjoyed his writing style and was really sad to see the story come to an end. I might even start looking into other similar works of fantasy just for the enjoyment of reading something that I’m not used to reading!
There were a few aspects of the story that I wasn’t CRAZY about. Like I said, I’m not a huge fantasy reader, and although this one really wasn’t overdone at all, there were a few characters (like the rat-speakers) that I felt were a bit overdone (although I guess when I look back they were pretty important).
I would definitely recommend this book to someone who is looking to give adult fantasy a shot, like me. It’s nothing too crazy and it’s an incredibly fun read!
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars