the wonderful world of veena.

20 June 2014

[audio] book review: neverwhere [neil gaiman].

Yes, yet another audiobook written and read by Neil Gaiman. I can't get enough of his stories or his voice, and Neverwherewas no exception.

Neverwhere is the story of Richard Mayhew, an ordinary man living an ordinary life in London. He works at a job that doesn't challenge him, is engaged to a woman who completely controls his life, and generally lives an unremarkable life until the night he sees an injured young woman on the side of the street and is moved to help her. He loses his fiance as a result, but in meeting Door, he learns of the magical world of London Below.

London Below is an entire universe that exists alternately to and underground from London Above. It's primarily filled with people who have fallen through the cracks, but there is still a hierarchy that exists. Door is the eldest daughter of a prominent man who was killed, and she has escaped to London Above to elude the people who are hunting her. In coming to her aid, Richard ties himself to Door and inadvertently finds himself amongst the people of London Below, fighting to keep Door alive and save the entire society from falling into the hands of evil.

Through a series of heart-pounding adventures, and with help from the Marquis de Carabas - and occasionally Old Bailey, who I admit to having a soft spot for - Richard and Door make their way through the underworld, traveling to open-air Markets, meeting blind monks and angels, and hunting for the key that will alleviate their situation and ensure Door's safety. There are twists and turns around every corner, people who are secretly helping Richard and Door as well as those only pretending to help, and it isn't until the end that everyone's true motivations are revealed.

As per usual with Neil Gaiman's audiobooks, I couldn't get enough of this one. I had an unexpected snafu with my phone in mid-April and the book got deleted from my phone, but I eventually got it back and finished it up this week. At just over 12 hours, this was the longest of his audiobooks that I've listened to, and I will admit to losing the plot a few times, but I don't think that would have happened had I not had that break. I thought the story was great, and while I found Richard to be a bit of a stick-in-the-mud at times - as I imagine he was intended to be - I really enjoyed all the characters from London Below. I found them to be well-developed, and although some turned out to not be good, I enjoyed how Gaiman revealed each character's inner workings. If you're taking a road trip and are looking for an audiobook to keep you company, this would be a good one.

And I've made a decision. I want Neil Gaiman to follow me around and narrate my life for me.

I really don't think it's too much to ask.

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