The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Illustrated
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Publication Date: May 3rd 2014


“Learning how to be strong, to feel her own emotions and not another’s, had been hard; but once you learned the trick of it, you did not forget.”

A retelling of beloved classic, Sleeping Beauty. A young queen and three dwarves set out to rescue a princess, and several towns, from eternal slumber. The queen soon discovers however, that not everything is what it seems to be.

This book is, above all, a beautiful piece of art. The use of gold ink to accent the black makes it feel magical and old. Riddell has made this story stunning. He has taken what would be a very average story and made it extravagant and lovely.

The story itself is rather average. It is certainly an interesting twist on Sleeping Beauty and it did take me somewhere I didn’t expect but it still felt somewhat hollow. It is an excellent fairy tale. It feels the way that all the classic fairy tales do and it’s clear that Gaiman was careful to write in that style, to really capture the heart of old works. Unfortunately, it’s not quite up to par with what you’d expect from Gaiman.

The story feels short and underdeveloped. It doesn’t feel like much happens and the ending was unsatisfying. For the length of the story I felt it was far too prose heavy and didn’t create enough meaningful drama or action.

The art alone makes it incredibly worth the read. The story definitely has the right feel, but it’s also definitely missing something that I can’t quite put my finger on.


Read this if you’re a fan of: The School for Good and Evil


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