Author: Neil Gaiman | Illustrators: Kent Williams / Shawn McManus / Stan Woch / Duncan Eagleson / Bryan Talbot / John Watkiss / Jill Thompson / P.Craig Russell | Page Count: 259
“Death was a little older than Dream. Things had the potential to die before they had the potential to dream.”
Book 6 of 10 in the Sandman saga is another collection of standalones. It’s twice as long as the previous collection (Vol III: Dream Country) but only half as good.
There are nine stories in all. Four of which are known collectively as Distant Mirrors, and three of which are known collectively as Convergence. The Distant Mirrors section, featuring historical figures, offers little of interest for the average reader; except perhaps Ramadan, the 50th issue of the series, the lingering revelations after the last page is turned, and P. Craig Russell’s beautiful art help raise it above average. The Convergence section is mostly uninteresting, except for the lengthy Orpheus tale, which is essential to the overall arc of the series.
The remainder of the shorts are merely subtext that I found tedious to read.
They flit backwards and forwards in time, showing different eras of Morpheus’ lifetime but they are out of sequence, the publication order has been shuffled around for some reason leaving all the better stuff in the second half. This made the first half a real struggle to get through.
The book collects together Sandman issues 29 – 31, 38 – 40 and 50, Sandman Special issue 1, and Vertigo Preview issue 1
2½ Greek myths resurrected out of 5