Life moves at a leisurely pace in the tiny town of Wall - named after the imposing stone barrier which separates the town from a grassy meadow. Here, young Tristran Thorn has lost his heart to the beautiful Victoria Forester and for the coveted prize of her hand, Tristran vows to retrieve a fallen star and deliver it to his beloved. It is an oath that sends him over the ancient wall and into a world that is dangerous and strange beyond imagining.
Reviewed on 2nd February 2020
I’ve read a couple of Neil Gaiman’s books before, and not found them easy to engage with, but this time I had seen the film (albeit some years ago) and enjoyed that, so thought that maybe this would be the Gaiman novel for me.
It’s the story of a young man who grows up on the edge of Fairie, and goes on a misguided adventure there as he reaches adulthood, encountering a number of strange things on his journeys.
Sadly, I found a similar problem to previous Gaiman novels - I struggle to get myself excited by the narrative - I’m not sure what it is exactly, perhaps that something in his choice of language means that I can’t absorb the story at the pace I want to, and this puts me off. As a story it seems solid, reminiscent of the Chronicles of Narnia in some respects, but I wasn’t able to get excited about it.
I think in future I will stick to consuming Gaiman’s television and film output, which I find entertaining and engaging - the film version of Stardust, his episode of Doctor Who, and the Good Omens series all being fantastic examples of this.