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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sumptuous, heavyweight version of a classic comic, 4 Feb 2008
This review is from: Absolute Sandman: v. 2 (Hardcover)
This second volume of The Absolute Sandman covers a purple patch in Neil Gaiman's epic series. Every page of the original run has been digitally remastered to produce the highest quality reproduction - and in the impressive hardback cover and larger page size, it's a sight to behold.

A couple of revisionist elements jar slightly. Colleen Dolan has re-inked her issue of "A Game of You" (originally Sandman #34), while a panel in "The Hunt" has been completely redrawn because the original (depicting a pair of werewolves mating) apparently looked a little too like just a man and a wolf. I remain unconvinced that the revisions bring any enhancements to the table.

The same cannot be said of the extras: a never-before-reprinted story about Destiny, various artists' interpretations of Morpheus (previously published as A Gallery of Dream), various other reprints and Gaiman's script for one of the Season of Mists issues, illustrated by the original pencil drafts for the same issue.

This impressive and weighty book is an invaluable record of one of the comics world's landmark series, and will be an essential part of any Sandman fan's (suitably reinforced) bookshelf.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Absolute Sandman Vol 2, 4 Jan 2008
By 
T. Fellingham "Terry" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Absolute Sandman, Volume 2 (Hardcover)
Please be aware that this is VOLUME 2 which is reprint of issues 21-39 of THE SANDMAN. Other than that, its a beautiful hard-backed copy of some of the best comics I've ever read. An absolute must for any Sandman/Neil Gaiman fan.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Tales of the Sandman, 22 Feb 2014
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Absolute Sandman, Volume 2 (Hardcover)
Neil Gaiman's shorter Sandman stories are like gems. But honestly, I've always preferred the longer arc-stories that fill out an entire collection -- and "The Absolute Sandman Vol. 2" brings together two of those stories, full of the richness of Gaiman's imagination and his entrancingly vivid characters.

"A Season of Mists" opens with a meeting of the Endless going wrong when Morpheus is challenged about his past treatment of his lover Nada. Chastened, he decides to go to Hell and free her. But when he gets there, Morpheus learns that Lucifer is tired of being the lord of Hell, and is busy shutting the whole place down.

Unfortunately, this means leaving the souls of the damned to wander the Earth. He gives ownership of it to Morpheus, but unsurprisingly Morpheus isn't interested. And soon various powers begin appearing to claim it -- ancient gods, demons, Order, Chaos, and Faerie. Who will become the new lords of Hell?

"A Game of You" picks up with Barbie, a very minor character from "The Doll's House," who has broken up with her husband and moved to New York. There she lives in an apartment building with her M-to-F buddy Wanda, a lesbian couple, a weird prim lady named Thessaly, and a weird guy.

But then she has a run-in with an imaginary creature from her childhood, who gives her a magical jewel with his dying breath. Soon Barbie is pulled into the fantasy world of her childhood, where she battles a mysterious enemy called the Cuckoo. But Thessaly and her neighbors set out to rescue her before she is lost forever -- and New York with her.

"Absolute Sandman Vol. 2" shows how incredibly versatile Neil Gaiman's writing can be -- it encompasses different worlds, dimensions and lands in a seeemingly endless, wondrously terrifying universe. But at the same time, it can delve into the infinite complexities of a single human mind.

Gaiman is absolutely brilliant at conjuring the exquisite and the grotesque, the eerie and the strange -- and he manages all of those here. There are childlike imaginings, the twilit realm of the Dreaming, and the visceral grotesqueness of the demons (one is a lumpen creature with a melting eyeless head and toothy mouths for nipples). It fascinates, even in its ugly moments.

My only problem, really, is in "Season of Mists." It bases itself on Christian theology that many people actually believe in (heaven, hell, Satan, angels, God, etc). But it isn't in line with those beliefs, so some parts of it come across as... uncomfortable to devout people.

Morpheus undergoes some truly enthralling character development. He's given a realm he doesn't want, but doesn't seem to have any good way of ridding himself of it (at least, not at first). And the Lord of Dream has to face up to his own misdeeds -- namely, he FINALLY figures out that he was horrible to Nada, and that his punishment of her was cruel.

But "A Game of You" also shows that even the most minor character becomes a fully realized, multidimensional character in Gaiman's hands. Barbie becomes a fragile, rather uncertain young woman, along with Foxglove, Hazel and the gold-hearted Wanda.

"Absolute Sandman Vol. 2" is a must-have for the die-hard aficionados who have some cash burning a hole in their pockets. Truly spellbinding.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, 10 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Absolute Sandman, Volume 2 (Hardcover)
Sandman is one of the most beautiful of books I have read.

It is a masterpiece of both art and storytelling, Neil Gaiman has constructed a world I cannot quite tear my imagination away from. The stories within this book are terrific- they inspire terror- they are awesome.

Read this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good quality product, 6 May 2012
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This review is from: Absolute Sandman: v. 2 (Hardcover)
Good quality printing,
if you like the sandman series, you'll love this.
Comes in a well constructed outer sleeve for protection.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Beautiful, 17 Dec 2011
This review is from: Absolute Sandman: v. 2 (Hardcover)
Neil Gaiman is a great writer, his pacing sometimes suffers from the level of detail he packs in, but in terms of the fascinating originality of the world he creates - there are few writers currently in league. Sandman was always an interesting story and one well worth the reading of, but this reissue makes a compulsory one. The art is beautiful, there is no other word for it, every page you turn demands a few moments appreciate, and the new stylistic decisions reinforce the power of each of the characters. It is really nicely bound and boxed, anyone would feel proud to have it on their bookshelves. I heartily recommend this to anyone who was interested in the fantasy genre, even if they weren't familiar with graphic novels.
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Absolute Sandman, Volume 2
Absolute Sandman, Volume 2 by Neil Gaiman (Hardcover - 14 Dec 2011)
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