The characters and setting are almost otherworldly, yet genuinely believable and relatable. Author does a wonderful job at breathing life into them with an excellent reading.
I work from home so enjoy audio books primarily for the 'company'. I tend to listen to the same books repeatedly if I really like them.
Have not read the print version but am looking forward to...
Author does a good job of giving each character an individual voice in the performance without making it hokey or forced. (No falsetto for the ladies' parts!).
Narrator. You can hear the genuine love Gaiman has for his characters and the stories.
This is the first Neil Gaiman book I've heard, but it certainly won't be the last!
Gaiman is one of the most reliably entertaining writers out there. He creates a world where the weird and magical coexist with the familiar and mundane world around us.
Richard Mayhew is the hapless hero of this Gaiman tale. Richard, in an act of kindness to help a young, injured girl, unknowingly cuts himself off from London Above. Lovable, clueless, and yet somehow, strangely accepting of the world beneath the streets of London - London Below - where he finds himself confronting royal courts, floating markets, rat-speakers, angels, knights in armor and monsters, Richard is a wonderful protagonist.
The majority of the tale is told from Richard's POV in third person and it is here that Gaiman shines. We see a man struggle with not only who he is, but how this is all possible, while also succumbing to the world around him in a way that allows his full participation, despite the logical part of his brain telling him, none of this is possible. Richard is curious and fascinated by London Below, but finds himself helping in improbable situations in order to get back home to London Above.
Gaiman doesn't waste time explaining the mechanics of this world - we simply figure them out along with the protagonist - or not and, again, like Richard, simply suspend our disbelief and go along for the ride. He shows that world-building isn't about paragraphs and pages of backstory and info dumping so the reader 'gets it' but rather, he trusts his readers will accept and join his adventure. Gaiman brilliantly weaves myth and urban legend and humorous literalism into a magical world filled with bizarre and entertaining folk.
Richard saves Door, a girl with powerful magic to open locks and doors and even create doors. Her family of openers been killed and she wants revenge. Richard, for his act of kindness, finds that he no longer exists in London Above - people don't really see him, his landlord re-leases his flat, his colleagues don't know him.... See no alternative, he joins Door on her attempt to find out what happened to her family. They are joined by the Marquis de Carabas - a thief who has restyled himself a lord and Hunter - who has slain mythical beasts like the Albino Alligator of New York. Along the way the meet of host of other characters who try to help or hinder their success. There is the Earl's Court that travels the 'dark unopening' car of an British Underground train that passes through the Earl's Court station (leaving Richard wondering if there's an Raven's Court....) and the assassins Vandermar and Croop - a bit like Pinky and the Brain and a hilarious take on the 'intellectual criminal and dunderheaded thug' type.
Richard and Door's adventure is a traditional hero quest and the characters mythological in many senses. The book had me laughing aloud at the puns and the familiar yet wholly original takes on types. I'd love to see more of the world of Neverwhere.
Recently retired. Mainly interested in self-development in the final third of life.
Just loved Neil Gaiman's presentation. The story is worth the full-length version - rather than the much shortened, but very prestigiously voiced, dramatised version. Buy it - doubt you'll regret it!
I'm an avid reader who loves having my hands free to work or engage in other projects.
Neverwhere wasn't what I thought it was going to be. It seemed like it was taking forever to get moving, and I almost stopped listening, but I am glad I kept on. I think this is the first of his books that I have heard with Mr Gaiman narrating, so it took a while me to get used to it. It is very much a modern faerie tale, that part of me wants to see done on the big screen, but... The more that I read from Mr. Gaiman, the less I want to see on the screen. This is because no one could do the projects proper justice. The story of a lonely dreamer who is finds himself drawn into an otherworldly adventure filled with wonderful characters, and fantastic, terrifying creatures, Neverwhere is just around the corner, as near as a closet door, yet as far as cross ocean journey. Don't miss this great read.
I'm a huge fan of Neil Gaiman's work, so my review is most definitely biased. That being said, he is by far one of my favorite narrators. He brings his own books to life, and the stories themselves are pure magic.
All of his books, this one included, have a few dark frightening characters in them. The thing is, they're so fascinating that I love them almost as much as the main characters! All of the characters leap off the page with such life that you can't help but be sucked in.
Long story short, it's a fun and engaging listen that I highly recommend!!
I didn't like the fact that ANYTHING was possible. Like " oh she's a rat whisperer", "Everyone Knows where the floating market is, but they don't know why". "this salesman kills and eats the crows he has in cages, but the crows are always pleasantly talking to him". There just constant stream of weird ,dark, nonsensical stuff that being thrown at you.
The main hero was very likable.
Yes, I am inspired to not buy any more of Neil's books. After watching Coralline, trying to read American Gods and this, I think I've figured out that I'm not a fan.
Neil Gaiman is incredible. I've had the pleasure to read or listen to a number of his novels now, and this one is right up there with Grave Yard Book and Good Omens.