By Neil Gaiman

Place: Publisher, Year: New York : Spike, 1999

Genres: Fantasy, faerie tale

ISBN: 0061142026

Intended audience: Adult

Number of pages: 238

Setting: Wall, England and Faerieland

Time  period: Victorian era

Plot summary: Tristan Thorn begins his adventure through Faerieland with a promise to Victoria Forester, the young woman he wishes to marry.  He promises to bring her the fallen star she witnesses as he attempts to charm a kiss from her.  To fulfill his promise, he must cross the stone barrier in his village of Wall and cross into unknown lands, where magic is common.  He has many adventures and learns many things, including his heart’s desire, which turns out to be quite different than what he imagined at the start of his journey.

Appeal factors:

Pacing: Slower pace at the beginning of the story to introduce the many various characters and the otherness of the setting.  The pace increases considerable once Tristan begins his journey on the other side of the wall.

Characterization: Told in third person.  Many characters are involved in the story, but are given much less description and attention than the two main characters- Tristan and Yvaine.

Frame: The frame of Faerie(land) is essential to the story.  Faerie is a wondrous and magical place, but also very dangerous.

StoryLine: A fun (but at times, grim) tale about finding true love under unusual circumstances.

Subject headings:

From PCPL:
Young men — England — Fiction.
England — Fiction.
England — Social life and customs — 19th century — Fiction.
Fantasy fiction.
Fairies — England — Fiction
Love stories.

Similar authors:

From What Do I Read Next?:
An Abundance of Katherines–John Green
Harmony–Rita Murphy
Spirits in the Wires–Charles de Lint

From NoveList:
Terry Pratchett
Robin McKinley
Kurt Vonnegut
Stephen King

Other Info: This story first appeared as a graphic novel with Charles Vess as the illustrator.  It was also made into a movie which was released in 2007.

Personal notes: [Annotated 10/08/2008]


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