I'm a bookworm of the highest caliber! If you see me, I'll probably be reading. There's nothing I love more than finding a good book, and then sharing it with the world!
Ah, happiest of sighs. I think everyone knows my obsession with Neil Gaiman at this point. Which is why, even though I've already read Neverwhere, I hopped on the opportunity to read this new version with Gaiman's preferred text. There's a wonderful note from him at the beginning that chronicles what he had to pull to make this what his publisher would be considered palatable for U.S. readers. In this particular version, everything is right back where it should be. As you might imagine, that makes this book a bit longer than normal. Trust me though, that's not a bad thing at all.
Richard Mayhew remains one of my all time favorite characters. His endearing awkwardness, his unfathomable kindness, everything about him just makes me adore him. Even when the world of London Below swallowed him up, Richard managed to keep his head about him. Watching him stumble through an adventure that he never thought he'd be taking, and slowly learn to accept that the world isn't quite what he believed it to be, never gets old for me! This is the third time I've read this book, although it's only the first time I've read this version. Richard continues to be his wonderful, too kind for his own good, self.
If you pressed me to tell you exactly what's different about Gaiman's preferred text version, versus the originally printed version, it would be difficult to pinpoint it for you. I noticed more description, specifically when it came to the Floating Markets and the Black Friars. I also noticed that Mr. Croup and Mr. Vandermeer were a bit more fleshed out. Which is lovely, because those two are as bad as bad guys could ever be. The best part about this version though is that there is an additional story at the end, centering around our lovely friend the Marquis de Carabas. If you're a fan of his egotistical ways, you'll love this story. Let's just say, he does get a bit of what's coming to him.
For those you who haven't yet taken the dive into London Below, let me assure you that it's well worth your time. Door, Hunter, the Marquis and Richard are all wonderfully written characters who are ready and waiting to transport you to their reality. I've always wished I'd actually been to the places that are mentioned in this story. If you're familiar with London, or better yet if you live there, you'll find Richard's inability to understand the quirkiness of London Below's maps quite reasonable. Ah, to have point of reference. You lucky readers, you.
Gaiman is wonderful. This book is wonderful. If you haven't yet read Neverwhere, I recommend picking up this version. It's well worth your time.