GRAPHIC NOVELS

Likely Stories

Gaiman, Neil (text) & & Chris Blythe (illus.). Dark Horse. Oct. 2018. 80p. ISBN 9781506705309. $17.99; ebk. ISBN 9781506705293. FANTASY
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A man who hasn't had sex in three years finds himself somehow afflicted by a horrible sexually transmitted disease. A lothario becomes enamored of his neighbor, an aging woman with a craving for raw meat. A young man coming of age in the 1970s and 1980s finds his path repeatedly crossing with a beautiful woman who never ages a day above 19. These strange, eerie stories, originally written and produced for British television and adapted to the page by illustrator Buckingham (Fables), aren't necessarily the best work Gaiman (A Study in Emerald) has produced in his long, legendary career. Some feel like sketches, while others drop off as soon as they seem to be getting to the good stuff. Luckily, Buckingham is a brilliant craftsman, capable of composing gorgeous pages that demand scrutiny and imbuing characters with life that goes deeper and further than a two-dimensional drawing should reasonably allow.
VERDICT Gaiman fans looking for his usual rich worldbuilding might find this a little slight, but the artwork makes it worthwhile for urban fantasy collections.

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