“Adventures are all very well in their place, he thought,
but there’s a lot to be said for regular meals and freedom from pain.”
Author: Neil Gaiman
Length: 248 pages
Source: personal collection
Reason for Reading: Been wanting to reread it lately to see exactly what the film changed about it. And I had forgotten about just how much was left out/added to the movie.
Summary (from Goodreads):
Stardust is an utterly charming fairy tale in the tradition of The Princess Bride and The Neverending Story. Neil Gaiman…tells the story of young Tristran Thorn and his adventures in the land of Faerie. One fateful night, Tristran promises his beloved that he will retrieve a fallen star for her from beyond the Wall that stands between their rural English town (called, appropriately, Wall) and the Faerie realm. No one ever ventures beyond the Wall except to attend an enchanted flea market that is held every nine years (and during which, unbeknownst to him, Tristran was conceived). But Tristran bravely sets out to fetch the fallen star and thus win the hand of his love. His adventures in the magical land will keep you turning pages as fast as you can–he and the star escape evil old witches, deadly clutching trees, goblin press-gangs, and the scheming sons of the dead Lord of Stormhold. The story is by turns thrillingly scary and very funny. You’ll love goofy, earnest Tristran and the talking animals, gnomes, magic trees, and other irresistible denizens of Faerie that he encounters in his travels. Stardust is a perfect read-aloud book, a brand-new fairy tale you’ll want to share with a kid, or maybe hoard for yourself. (If you read it to kids, watch out for a couple of spicy sex bits and one epithet.) –Therese Littleton
My Thoughts: It is so hard for me to decide how much I like this book, because I’ve grown to love the movie so much. And this is an instance when great liberties were taken to create the movie. I think this has made me realize–even more than other rereads–I need to go about rereads differently. In the case of books I read once and then saw the movie countless times, I think I might just NOT review the book, especially to give it a rating. I’ll try very hard to read it as a completely different story, regarding the movie. Maybe I should even go so far as to try to look for similarities between the book and movie, so that the differences don’t take such a leading role in my mind.
After trying very hard to put from my mind the movie, I’ve decided I still really enjoy the book. Parts that get lots of attention in the film get little in the book and vice versa. But that doesn’t change the fact that Gaiman is amazing at creating worlds. (I love Neverwhere, The Graveyard Book, and Coraline.)
Quotes I Liked:
“…every lover is in his heart a madman, and in his head a minstrel.” (p78)
“Tristran and Yvaine were happy together. Not forever-after, for Time, the thief, eventually takes all things into his dusty storehouse, but they were happy as these things go, for a long while.” (p247)
I just liked how real that is. But it’s still happy and “romantic”.