Books of Magic

I have been meaning to read the original Books of Magic mini-series for years. I finally got around to it and I have to say it was a big disappointment.

The mini-series is painted by four different artists and looks amazing. The premise is fantastic, because it provides an opportunity to take a stroll through the Vertigo landscape and meet all its inhabitants. That in itself makes the book exciting and fun to read, but coupled with some good plot twists and some interesting dialogue, it could have been something really special. Unfortunately, Gaiman is incapable of providing plot twists or genuinely interesting dialogue, so you wind up with a comic that’s good but not great. It’s just such a wasted opportunity.

I know that I am perhaps being overly critical. Had it been written by someone without the high profile of Neil Gaiman, I might be a little more accepting. I feel like Gaiman always has such great characters and mythology at his disposal, but never manages to take them to places that genuinely excite me. His narratives are not particularly clever and his writing often strikes me as pretentious.

If, for some reason, you feel like reading the series yourself and making your own judgements, I went to the trouble of uploading it for you:

Books of Magic 1: ‘The Invisible Labyrinth’
Books of Magic 2: ‘The Shadow World’
Books of Magic 3: ‘The Land of Summer’s Twilight’
Books of Magic 4: ‘The Road to Nowhere’

Don’t say I didn’t warn you, though.


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