Wednesday, February 27, 2013


by Neil Gaiman
288 pages
High School+

Tristran Thorn lives in a small English village that is only notable because it is next to the Wall, the barrier between our world and Faerie.  Only once every nine years is the Wall crossed for a mystical market.  Tristran is only notable because of his sighing over a beautiful, but distant, Victoria.  As he woos her, he promises to bring her a fallen star to prove his devotion to her.  Determined to gain that star and sin Victoria's hand, Tristran crosses the Wall.

Entering into a world that is completely new to him, Tristran is overwhelmed by everything strange and different from his sheltered life.  Once he finds the star, instead of a hunk of rock, he finds a beautiful girl.  But he isn't the only hunter of this star.  Witches, princes and more hunt the star, and now Tristran, as he journeys to find love.

So, like most people, I like the movie better than the book, but I still like the book.  The tongue-in-cheek humor reminded me of The Princess Bride, but not as philosophical or bitingly satirical.  But definitely lots of adventure, lots of fantasy, lots of twists, lots of fun!

I would definitely keep this to high school, and probably even later high school, due to an early scene in the book (Tristran's conception) that is a little too graphic for even my taste.  While not horrible, not necessarily something I want to read or that I want kids to read.

Overall, fun book.  Not quite as good as the movie, but still good.  Characters are likable, and the plot is entertaining.  The story telling voice is different than a normal fantasy, but to me, that is part of the uniqueness of the book. 

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