It’s no secret to anyone that I’m a huge Neil Gaiman fan. I don’t buy as many books as I used to since Wellington has a great public library but, if there’s a new release by my favourite author, I’ll definitely get one for my collection. And on Saturday my copy of The Sleeper and the Spindle arrived.
Beautifully illustrated by Chris Riddell, The Sleeper and the Spindle tells the story of a young queen and three brave dwarfs who travel to a kingdom covered in cobwebs to wake a princess. It’s a mix of Snow White and Sleeping Beauty with Neil’s own touch of magic to the fairy tale.
“So this is where it began,” said one of the little men.
“On her birthday,” said another.
“Well,” said the third, “Somebody’s got to do the honours.”
“I shall,” said the queen, gently. She lowered her face to the sleeping woman’s. She touched the pink lips to her own carmine lips and she kissed the sleeping girl long and hard.
I devoured the book in less than an hour. The art is so enchanting and exquisite my eyes would linger on each page just studying every detail in black, white, and golden. And I know the sound of Neil’s voice so well I could hear him reading the book to me in my head. The new spin is a much-welcomed breath of fresh air and it’s always a pleasure to read a story about a young woman who makes her own choices. Highly recommended!
The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Chris Riddell