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The Sandman Vol 9: The Kindly Ones

Sunday, October 16, 2005

The Sandman Vol 9: The Kindly Ones (1996) Neil Gaiman

This is my least favorite book in the Sandman series. Part of it has to do with the fact that it’s a sad storyline. Normally in a book you have the good and bad parts together, however in the Sandman, there were eight books leading up to The Kindly Ones, so it’s pretty much all heartbreak within.

The other reason, however, is that I really dislike much of the artwork in this collection. It’s angular and strange and no one quite looks like themselves. I kept having to go stop and go back and try and figure out who people are, because they just don’t look the same as they have in other stories. Everything is harsh and hard and makes the story even harder to read than it already is.

As far as the story, as I said, it’s good, but sad. There’s nothing here to soften the blow or to make things easier. In retrospect, you should have seen it coming, but that doesn’t mean you did.

If you’ve been reading along then you, of course, must read this book. It’s the conclusion of the story. The Wake, Book 10, is just the end of the story tidying up–a necessary tiding up–but The Kindly Ones is where everything happens. You close the book knowing that this is the end. There may be another book–a small one–to follow, but this, this book contains the end.
Rating: 7/10

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