The Sandman 1: Preludes & Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman: B+

From the inside flap:
Enter a dark and enchanting world of dreams and nightmares and meet the Sandman, master of dreams, and his kin—the Endless.

This first collection of Neil Gaiman’s unique and multi-award-winning Sandman saga introduces key themes and characters, combining myth, magic, and black humor.

This volume collects issues #1-8 of the Sandman comics. Morpheus, the Lord of Dreams, was inadvertently captured by some occultists who were attempting to trap and contain his sister, Death. They imprisoned him for 70 years and stole his stuff, and when he finally escaped, he wanted it back. He took the next few chapters to complete the quest.

I was occasionally lost when the story veered too far into mythological territory, and one story called “24 Hours” was incredibly disturbing, but on the whole I liked it. The best, however, was the last story, called “The Sound of Her Wings.” In it, Morpheus was a bit mopey because he’d completed his quest and his spunky sister came to drag him out of his doldrums. And throw bread at him.

As seems to be the case with comic books, the physical appearance of Morpheus was pretty inconsistent. I decided to think of him as Stephen Rea with blue hair, and that worked pretty well.

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