Neil Gaiman has a knack, it seems, for pulling awfully talented artists to him. Michael Zulli's style is just lovely and always hits an art nouveau ch...moreNeil Gaiman has a knack, it seems, for pulling awfully talented artists to him. Michael Zulli's style is just lovely and always hits an art nouveau chord for me. (I think Mucha in particular with all the poppies that tend to be in Zulli's pieces, roses too, I believe.) For that alone it's worth paging through.
I've liked The Price since first reading it in Smoke and Mirrors (thank you again Sci-Fi/Fantasy book club of the 90s). As a cat owner, really owned by the cat would be more apt, it has a definite connection. But I'd think that anyone, pet owner or not, would connect. There's something to be said about the supernatural when it comes to animals. Are they more sensitive? It is just genetic? Is it something more than biology? I certainly don't know. Just like I don't know how my cat knows when I'm about to take her to the vet when I haven't done anything, not even brought the carrier in from the garage. It's a powerful story to me as many of Gaiman's short stories are.
The Daughter of the Owls I also enjoyed. I'm not recalling the details of it as well at the Price, but I remember being struck by an overall sense of loneliness. I know that it brought to mind other stories as well as other authors. Angela Carter and Tanith Lee being prime among them. Sometimes, I think, it's harder to write a story that unfolds gently, that seems slow or almost inactive. Some, of course, actually are just that, slow and inactive. Others really aren't.
Neither were disappointing for me and I'm always thrilled to have illustrations. Particularly beautiful ones.(less)
I'm not big into superhero comics, though I'm sure I have a few old JLA and Wonder Woman somewhere. I am, though (if anyone looks through my lists) a...moreI'm not big into superhero comics, though I'm sure I have a few old JLA and Wonder Woman somewhere. I am, though (if anyone looks through my lists) a big fan of Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean, which is no doubt why I have a copy of Black Orchid.
So, after reading the biography on Mr. Gaiman, which was also a running total of his work with synopsis until 2009, I believe, I have a much better understand and appreciation of Black Orchid and the entire evolution of the Green World. I'm rather doubting that this will encourage me toward Swamp Thing (though he does pop up in Hellblazer, so I'm just glad I know who he is and don't equate him to bad B-movies.)
Still, it doesn't mean the story's bad. It's not. And Dave McKean's art work is, as usual, brilliant. It's just not a thing I'm much into. But, it certainly shows the scope of their work, how flexible both are in genres. (less)
I'm not sure where I stumbled across Bill Willingham. I'm going to guess, though, it was in one of the Sandman spin offs. The memory is hazy, though....moreI'm not sure where I stumbled across Bill Willingham. I'm going to guess, though, it was in one of the Sandman spin offs. The memory is hazy, though. For whatever reason, and perhaps it was just the amazing coverwork of James Jean, I found Fables.
Gaiman's Sandman is probably going to always be my all time favorite comic, but Fables runs a mighty close second. The story is engrossing, the characters rich, and the artwork endlessly fun.
Now, I suppose it helps a little to know your faerytales, myths, folklore and the like. But really, if you do, it just makes it richer. If you don't, you're not going to be lost. What I truly love is that all the characters are literally literal. You can find them in stories. Snow White really does have a sister named Rose Red. It's not impossible for Prince Charming to have married Beauty, Cinderella, or Snow White (after all, he's in all those stories and probably more with just a title). The Big Bad Wolf for a sheriff. Old King Cole as mayor. It just gets better as it goes along. So great. Such fun.(less)