O! what Man will do fore a Rime!

Self-proclaimed bibliophile, culture nut and nerdfighter. English lit. and linguistics geek. Future career in publishing.

Stardust by Neil Gaiman

Stardust - Neil Gaiman

Note: The review below was taken directly from my Goodreads account.



Stardust is about a young man named Tristran Thorn who sets off to capture a fallen star to prove his love for Victoria, but to do so he must cross the wall that separates their town from a land of magic and mysticism called Faerie.

Oh, the whimsy! This is one of the most whimsical books I think I've ever read, if not the most. Gaiman just has a writing style that lends itself well to whimsy and fantasy. It reminded me a lot of The Tempest in that sense. Just magical all around.

The comedy was great, the magic was magical (I apologize for that) and the adventure was thrilling. I think the writing was between the quality of young adult and adult, and even though there are sex scenes in the book I can see people reading this to their children (of an appropriate age) before bed. This novel basically lends itself to story-telling.

The only issue I really had with it was that the stakes never seemed very high, and I blame that on the whimsical feel of the novel. The witches didn't seem like they were that bad (they certainly weren't good), but that may be just because Tristran and Yvaine got out of those situations a little easily. I also wish that the flying pirate ship was a part of the novel more. I really like the idea of flying pirates and it would've been nice to read more about them.

These criticisms are mostly because I'd seen the movie way before reading the book, so those parts were clearly more action-ized for the big screen. I think that people who'd seen the movie first will still really enjoy the book.

Can we talk about Tristran's name though? The spelling indicates that you should pronounce the second "r," but that just makes it ridiculously hard to pronounce and it sounds bad. Pronouncing it as "Tristan" is nicer. I don't know how you're actually supposed to pronounce it, but it's screwing me up. And where does the syllable break come in? Is it ['trɪs.trən] or ['trɪ.strən]? Linguistics has taught me that put everything in the onset if you can. Looking at it and repeating the two options in my head is making me more confused. Who knew that Tristran's name would make me this wonky?

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