Ben's Reviews > Stardust

Stardust by Neil Gaiman
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's review
Sep 22, 09

bookshelves: read-in-2009, good-fiction, like-magic
Read in September, 2009

I can only do fantasy novels every so often; I much prefer literature. Still, I find it important to read these things on occasion, because they provide such an excellent escape: that leap into worlds that are nothing like ours; the way they enable our going beyond ourselves and render us capable of expanding our consciousness; the way they can temporarily alter us in ways non-fantasy novels are incapable. We could all use that kind of escape once in a while.

And Stardust was great for just that. It was an easy read, never a strain; very imaginative, even at times, captivating. This was my first exposure to Gaiman and I'm left impressed: his writing was acute and flowing, his imagination, vivid; most of all, the man can tell a story with the best of them. Or, at least, that's what I take from Stardust: A love story in the fantasy realm, done so well it could only have been written by a master of the craft, which is what Neil Gaiman seems to be.
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Comments (showing 1-17 of 17) (17 new)

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Paula I love this book! I hope you find it enjoyable.

message 2: by Nicole (new)

Nicole Are you planning to see the movie? Have not read the book or seen the film. Would love to read your review and determine if worthwhile! Good luck.

message 3: by Ben (last edited Sep 22, 2009 05:39AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ben I really liked it, you two. Extremely enjoyable; I'm looking forward to more in Gaiman in my near future.

message 4: by Martine (new)

Martine Glad you enjoyed Stardust, Ben. I haven't read the book yet, but I'm a fan of the movie and some of Gaiman's other books. If you're ever in the mood for more Gaiman-flavoured escapism, try Good Omens, which he co-wrote with Terry Pratchett. It's a bit uneven, but at its best it's laugh-out-loud funny.

Nicole, the Stardust film adaptation is a lot of fun. The Robert de Niro scenes (which I've been told aren't in the book) feel a bit extraneous to the story (although they are entertaining in themselves), but other than that, it's a near-flawless film which seems to appeal to both male and female viewers. I've seen it several times now and never fail to be amused. I wholeheartedly recommend it.

message 5: by Kim (new) - rated it 2 stars

Kim I can't get into Gaiman... I think I keep picking up the wrong books... :(

message 6: by Ben (last edited Sep 22, 2009 07:50AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ben Martine, it's been so long! Wonderful to hear from you, and thanks for the Good Omens and Stardust-film recommendations; I now hope to get around to both. I think you'd like this, and you'd probably get through it very quickly.

Kim: That's a bummer. Why do you think that is? What books from him have you read?

message 7: by Martine (new)

Martine Ben, the book is very much on my to-read list. I actually own it, and am waiting for an opportunity to read it. The problem is that I own about five hundred other unread books which are vying for my attention...

Oh, well. I'll get round to it eventually. In the meantime, enjoy the film. It really is worth checking out!

message 8: by Stephen (new)

Stephen Good review, Mr. Harrison

message 9: by Ben (last edited Sep 24, 2009 07:52AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ben Hey, Meg! Yes, Stardust would be an excellent book for a maturing young man with an imagination. I'm not sure if all Gainman's work is considered teen or YA, but I don't think Stardust should be -- well maybe for those in the older teen range. The main character is an 18 year-old with the classic teen struggles of self consciousness, identity, and young love, but there's also sex (just a small amount; explicate but not graphic) and the writing is probably for a more advanced teen reader. This was very readable, yes, but there are plenty of vocab words and such that an early reader may struggle with.

Despite all this, it really is a beautiful story, replete with adventure and good lessons. I say go for it! : )

message 10: by Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ben No problem. Maybe some of the other Gaiman books would be better for him. I think it'd be worth looking into.

Jeremy Did you just say that fantasy novels aren't "literature"???

The fuck . . .?

Susan Lowes Are you seriously insinuating fantasy novels aren't literature? You need to re-read your review!!!!

message 13: by David (new)

David You should not use the word 'syllabic' if you don't know how to spell it.

Books Ring Mah Bell Only despicable human beings think fantasy is not literature.


message 15: by David (new)

David Hey. Some guy deleted his comment and left me swatting at imaginary flies.

message 16: by David (new)

David Also: what is acute writing?

message 17: by Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ben What a jerk (and pussy).

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