4 stars · book reviews · fantasy YA


Title: Stardust
Author: Neil Gaiman
Paperback, 250 pages

Summary from Goodreads:

Hopelessly crossed in love, a boy of half-fairy parentage leaves his mundane Victorian-English village on a quest for a fallen star in the magical realm. The star proves to be an attractive woman with a hot temper, who plunges with our hero into adventures featuring witches, the lion and the unicorn, plotting elf-lords, ships that sail the sky, magical transformations, curses whose effects rebound, binding conditions with hidden loopholes and all the rest. 

1alineBreakI haven’t seen the movie version of this book, but a colleague already told me to ignore the movie adaptation ; it does not do justice to this amazing book.

I can agree with her, because I really liked Stardust – the Book! This book is billed as a “fairy tale for adults”, and that is exactly what it is, executed in the most brilliant way possible. It is a true fairy tale for all adults who dreamed that fairy tales could be come true; but with a nice sexy and cynical twist for those same dreamy adults who know what the world is really like.

Sex is blended seamlessly into the story, although not in a pornographic way. Unlike traditional children’s fairy tales, where a quick kiss to wake a sleeping princess is about as racy as it gets—this story tells love and sex like it is. There are one night stands in the forest and beautiful maidens who use unsuspecting nerds to boost their egos.

Although the story has the requisite happy ending for the main characters, main and minor characters must make moral and lifestyle choices which mirror the lives of real people. People fall in and out of love; and question whether infatuation and sexual desire were real love in the first place. Characters are forced to choose between love, power, money, duty, and respectability—and they do not always make the choices one would like them to make. And those characters who make a mockery of love and choose lives without love only serve to emphasize the love between the one couple who finally gets it right. This adult fairy tale illustrates that although true love is difficult in the complexities of the adult world, it is not impossible. But real love is never for the weak of heart.

I love the blending of the characters where they will all eventually meet one way or another. I love the ending which really brought justice to Tristan & Yvaine’s happily ever after!

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