The hunters of Dreams, Neil Gaiman's best for the tenth anniversary of the Sandman | Review


Published on Sep 05, 2017


There is the work, study, social life and the usual daily routine. Then there is the night and, for the more fortunate (or less, depending on your point of view) there are the dreams.

In the midst of all this, there is Neil Gaiman, one of the few writers able to combine all the elements and, why not, write a story, illustrated then by Yoshitaka Amano and come down to us in the form of a seemingly simple volume from the collection. The books, however, are not only books and inside they contain a world that is almost never fully perceptible.


To write this short novel, written to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Sandaman, Gaiman has found fertile ground in the large archive of japanese fables: a monk, a hermit, locked in his own monastery, he meets a fox who will fall in love and, in turn, fall in love with him. And this is the incipit, surrounded by a dark prophecy launched by the Onmyoji, who hovers on the life of a monk, of the beginning of a dream journey that will take us straight to the arms of the King of Dreams. Without any possibility of going back.


As the words on the magical scroll you received from the monk magically appear once you have entered the Realm of Dreams, so readers, initially, lost in an atmosphere of semi-sleep, they fall asleep completely in between the words of Neil Gaiman, embraced by a Morpheus gushing life force. The story comes straight to the heart, in its simplicity and perhaps naivete, thanks to a continuous and inexplicable sensational vortex, which is energy in the illustrations of Love, piercing more than ever. The mastery of the japanese artist stands out thanks to the contrast between the illustrations more dark and turbulent, and the images bright, colorful light more than true: dream-like, precisely as the world in which we enter into without realizing it.

The strength of this work is, without a shadow of a doubt, the ability to wrap the reader with an aura of mystical, almost inexplicable, as if, in reality, does nothing but expand only the vibrations of our soul, so the bottom manages to penetrate it. Shouldn't that be the ultimate purpose of a work of art?


Are past 18 years, the composition of this volume, which goes on today between our hands, thanks to Dana and RW Editions. An edition hard-cover sublime, almost could be the only to view the content is so powerful. The material keeps to himself perfectly the words and the images of the two artists (perfect choice of the frame to contain the text on the page) and, as a whole, gives the idea of a “modern” manuscript pulled out from who knows what library to distribute it to readers. Even the smell, of strong ones, know of magic.

The perfect rendition editorial and the incredible talent of Neil Gaiman and Yoshitaka Amano makes this book a piece that is a must for collectors of Fantasy, fans of the Sandman, eastern culture (the various references to Buddhism, just to emphasize once again the passion of Gaiman to the cults and religions), and for all those who simply love the beautiful art, which, as said a few line above, is nothing if not one that leaves you with a taste of life again on the mouth after you taste it. This work, without no doubt, fulfills his duty: which is to his taste, however, it is up to you to find it out.

And you can read the first chapter of the novel here.

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