Alejandro's Reviews > The Kindly Ones

The Kindly Ones by Neil Gaiman
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bookshelves: comic-book, horror, magic, paranormal

Superbly written but too long for what the story is about


Creative Team:

Writer: Neil Gaiman

Illustrators: Marc Hempel, Richard Case, D’Israeli, Glyn Dillon, Teddy Kristiansen, Charles Vess, Dean Ormston & Kevin Nowlan

Covers: Dave McKean

Letterer: Todd Klein


THE END IS NIGH

We do what we do because of who we are. If we did otherwise, we would not be ourselves.

Before of anything, I want to comment that it was very nice to find that The Kindly Ones TPB price remained in $19.99, the same as other previous TPBs. I mention this, since this ninth volume is easily twice the long, so it could be normal to be priced in a higher price. Maybe it was a request by Neil Gaiman, the author, or not. In any case, it was good to buy this TPB at the same price that the other previous ones.

How childish. Men!

The Kindly Ones was a tricky book to rate.

Since it’s the longest (so far) volume in the series, and certainly it was superbly written, but in my humble personal opinion, it’s too long once you get to the point of the story. Even, the trigger element for the following happening is odd and kinda clumsy, once the story unfolds.

However, in this ninth volume, if you can read between lines, some mysteries are revealed, specially one connected to the identity of someone who was close to the heart of Morpheus but you never got the chance of watching them together in The Dreaming and other characters when commented about the romance, they never say the name of the mysterious lady. Here, you can find it out, if you read carefully and certainly is surprising/awesome/powerful (pick your poison).

So, the dilemma remains. A story unnecesarily long, lacking excitement at the climax, beginning under a weak reason.

BUT...

...Also, a story wonderfully written, crafty use of current and previous characters in the series, promising a strong change in the status quo of the series for the next volume.

...ravens... Some were larger than eagles. Some were older than gods. They stayed in the shadows, kawwing and tokking. Waiting.

Hippolyta Hall returns to the series and now her son, Daniel, is missing and presumed dead. So, Lyta Hall goes berserk, losing her bonds to reality and making a journey to find the original Furies (that if you value your safety it’s better to refer to them as the “Kindly Ones”) looking for some people powerful enough to make suffer the one that Lyta blames for Daniel’s dissapearance...

...Morpheus, Lord of Dreams.

Nothing is too cute and sweet to be dangerous. Nothing is safe.

Based in that premise in the way that I had present it to you, it’s natural to think that this must be one heck of story. In certains ways it is, however, once the events unfold, and the volume comes to a closure, you are left with a sense that the story indeed has an odd and weak reason, that the development is just too slow and at the climax you were robbed of the expected excitement to be felt at that point.

It’s very likely that in the next volume, many things will be explained (I do hope!), but since I am not able to know it for certain, I can only work on what I found here in the ninth volume.

But, one thing is clear...

...things were never the same anymore!


OLD ACQUAINTANCES AND SOMETHING MORE

They’re just made-up people. They didn’t really exist.

That doesn’t mean they don’t have stories.

In the ninth volume, The Kindly Ones, as the title revealed, you will have this sharp trio of women that even gods are afraid of them, and with the power of take revenge of any blood-debt...

...not matter who is the guilty one...

...even a member of The Endless.

Obviously you have all the support characters who live in The Dreaming under command of Morpheus (even someone so lethal who you may think that will never return is back again!)

Moreover, you will have many great characters that you previously met in past volumes, like (as I mentioned before) Lyta Hall and her son Daniel, but also Rose Walker, Thessaly aka Larissa (easily my second favorite character in the series after Death), well Death is here too, Odin, Lucifer Morningstar, and some others that I opt of not mentioning to avoid some spoilers or cool surprises.

But, one thing is clear...

...this story is a crafty result of the interactions and decisions of many characters along the series that in the past you may not realizing the impact of that...

...until now.

It has always been the prerogative of children and half-wits to point out that the emperor has no clothes. But the half-wit remains half-wit, and the emperor remains an emperor.









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Reading Progress

July 24, 2015 – Started Reading
July 29, 2015 – Shelved
July 29, 2015 – Shelved as: comic-book
July 29, 2015 – Shelved as: horror
July 29, 2015 – Shelved as: magic
July 29, 2015 – Shelved as: paranormal
July 29, 2015 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-11 of 11 (11 new)

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Aj the Ravenous Reader Awesome, honest review, Kuya Alejandro!^^


message 2: by Cherie (new)

Cherie Hmm. Gotta get back to this series.


message 3: by Pearl (new)

Pearl Angeli Lovely review, Kuya Alejandro! :D


message 4: by Michael (new)

Michael Those 3 star reviews are so tough on the digestive system. It's like yin-yang physics how all the pluses and minuses average out. Sort of like family.


Sara Good review. I hadn't noticed the length because I read all these as they came out each month which I think gives a different perspective than when they are collected as a graphic novel. My ratings for the Sandman are probably higher than they would be if I were to read them now as collections. I remember thinking "I can't wait until next month! I need my Sandman!"


Alejandro Aj the Ravenous Reader wrote: "Awesome, honest review, Kuya Alejandro!^^"

Thanks a lot for your kind feedback, Aj ;)


Alejandro Cherie wrote: "Hmm. Gotta get back to this series."

Oh, indeed I hope you'd re-engage into this series :) I have the rest of the books already bought and wating to be read :P Hopefully I will read them all in the following weeks.


Alejandro Marita wrote: "Great closing line to a good review, Alejandro."

Hi, Marita :D It was the strongest quote in this TPB, so I opted to put it at the end of it ;)


Alejandro Pearl wrote: "Lovely review, Kuya Alejandro! :D"

Thank you so much, Pearl ;) I appreciate your kind feedback!


Alejandro Michael wrote: "Those 3 star reviews are so tough on the digestive system. It's like yin-yang physics how all the pluses and minuses average out. Sort of like family."

You are quite right, Michael! 3-stars are supposed to be still on the fair side of a positive reading, since it's described as "I liked it", but for some reason, the general position is that if you give a 3-stars rating implies that you didn't like the book at all. Weird.


Alejandro Sara wrote: "Good review. I hadn't noticed the length because I read all these as they came out each month which I think gives a different perspective than when they are collected as a graphic novel. My rating..."

Hehehe, I am sure that reading Sandman on its single issues must be such a wonderful experience and indeed one could barely can wait to the next issue ;)

It's never easy for me to give a kinda low rating to a Neil Gaiman's work since I have a high opinion about him (and I still do) so when I give a rating under 4-stars, I give it a lot of thought before.


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