Best known for his Sandman
graphic novels about Morpheus, Lord of Dreams, Neil Gaiman has also written the standalone books Good Omens
(with Terry Pratchett), Never Where
from his BBC TV series revealing a fantastic realm under London, and Star Dust
, a poignant fairy tale. His shorter fantasies are regularly picked for Year's Best collections. Smoke and Mirrors
assembles 36 of his favourite stories, prose poems, and verse pieces. Among the imaginative inventions here are a murder mystery set among angels in heaven; the discovery of the Holy Grail at Oxfam; warped retellings of fairy tales and folklore, including a Snow White that's black beyond belief; several clever variations on vampirism; a firm of contract killers with a very remarkable discount scheme; homages to Michael Moorcock and H.P. Lovecraft (one splendidly funny) that avoid mere pastiche; an SF world of rapid and reversible sex changes; Beowulf
retold as a Baywatch episode; a tasty amalgamation of computers and black magic; a new final book of the Bible; and the grim wedding present that's simply a manuscript telling a bleakly different story of the recipients' unfolding marriage. SF/fantasy professionals themselves envy Gaiman's perpetual flow of new ideas and ability to put a fresh spin on old ones. Smoke and Mirrors
is a dazzlingly varied and rewarding collection. --David Langford
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
'A very fine and imaginative writer'
(The Sunday Times