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Fragile things : short fictions and wonders
Neil Gaiman
Adult Fiction GAIMAN

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From Publishers' Weekly:

The 30 short stories and poems in this collection vary widely in theme and tone, from the dark, recursive "Other People" to the witty, R.A. Laffertyesque "Sunbird." Aside from one new tale, "How to Talk to Girls at Parties," all material has been previously published. Gaiman performs admirably as narrator for the most part, changing his style from story to story to better suit the tone of each. However, in the more experimental pieces in the collection, this practice backfires and may leave listeners reaching for the fast-forward button. The poems often work on paper, but when read aloud many feel like disjointed, nonsensical stories. Gaiman is at his best when narrating his more traditional tales, such as the sly and inventive Sherlock Holmes/H.P. Lovecraft pastiche "A Study in Emerald," and the noirish "Keepsakes and Treasures." There are enough terrific stories in the book to make it a must-have for Gaiman fans, but dedicated readers may want to choose the hardcopy edition instead, so as to more easily skip the dross. Simultaneous release with the William Morrow hardcover (Reviews, July 17). (Oct.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

From Library Journal:

This third collection of "short fictions and wonder" (after Smoke and Mirrors and Adventures in the Dream Trade) from the author of Anansi Boys ranges from a tale of zombies to a series of meditations inspired by singer Tori Amos's album, Strange Little Girls. As in his other books, there are fantastical elements. Gaiman follows no overarching theme, but that is what makes these stories charming, at times creepy, and good fun. They read like dreams and meditations, with a stream-of-consciousness quality to their presentation. Gaiman also explains some of the inspiration behind the stories to help put them in perspective. Overall, well worth adding to any collection; highly recommended for all public libraries. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 6/15/06.]-Anastasia Diamond, Cleveland P.L. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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