Western Courier

Gaiman brings fans from all genres

Sandra Sepaniak

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There are many well-known authors today that have gained a reputation for writing certain genres – Stephen King is renowned for his horror stories, James Patterson is synonymous with thrillers and Dan Brown is often associated with mysteries.

However, fans of these genres often associate another name with their favorite genres and several more, and that name is Neil Gaiman.

Before he made a name as one of the most prolific writers in the world, Gaiman started out as a journalist and science fiction fan.

Having grown up with the works of authors such as Edgar Allen Poe and J. R. R. Tolkien, along with Batman comics, he soon became an author in his own right with a biography about the rock band Duran Duran.

This was only the beginning of a long bibliography.

Many animated film buffs will recognize his children’s story, “Coraline,” which was in theaters a few years ago. The storyline followed a young girl who had escaped to another world in order to fulfill some of her greatest desires, but the world soon turned out to be something far more sinister.

Readers of dark fantasy, mysteries and horror stories will often tell their friends of Gaiman’s other work as well, naming books such as “Neverwhere,” “American Gods” and “Stardust.”

Not only can he tell a compelling story with interesting characters, but he also does it with a unique, clear writing style.

With it, readers can understand that Richard Mayhew from “Neverwhere” is a bit of a loveable oaf who doesn’t seem to have much of a chance at surviving the underground world he was unwillingly forced to join, and yet they follow his misadventures anyway.

Many of Gaiman’s main characters are unwilling victims of circumstance. This seems to be a common occurrence in his writing, but in a lot of cases, it’s a good thing. After all, the best scares and surprises on Halloween nights are never expected.

If Richard Mayhew were to intentionally go looking for trouble, the trouble he’s gotten himself into wouldn’t look nearly as bad, or the readers would ignore him and say he had it coming.

Neil Gaiman seems to be something resembling a renaissance man. Not only has he created books, but he’s also written graphic novels and scripts for television shows such as the BBC’s hit series, “Doctor Who.”

As for future projects, he always seems to have something in the works, so his readers can only wonder, “How will he surprise us next?”

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Gaiman brings fans from all genres