As someone who just recently (re)discovered the Sandman books, this was a wonderful coda to the series. The artwork for all the stories was gorgeous; and that says a lot, considering there were many Sandman books that I felt were drawn horribly. What stood out to me the most was the Desire and Despair stories. The other siblings have been explored so many times, I didn’t get anything new (well, maybe Dream, but I’ll get to that in a bit).
In Desire’s story, I love how the main character breaks the fourth wall by constantly looking at the reader as she narrates the story. It gave an intimate feel the story, which in itself is erotic in nature, and the ending is beautifully poignant. Out of the stories, I was surprised that this one became my favorite.
Despair’s story is more of a character study told in prose and portrait, but I really liked it. I it had more depth than Destiny’s character study, mainly because it showed Despair doing different things that seemed absurd (fishing in a church, sitting on a grave reading a newspaper) juxapositioned with people experiencing despair.
Death’s story would be my third favorite. The sight of the two virgins nervously clasping hands before going to their “unorthandox demise” was cute. The end surprised me, gave it a darker touch.
Dream’s story was okay. I was bored of the whole Dream/Desire rivalry. But it was awesome to see the siblings so young. I wish there was more shown of a gloomy Death, a kid Delight, and the first Despair (which didn’t seem all that different from the second one).
Delirium’s was…weird. No surprise there. Destruction’s was nice. And Destiny’s was…meh…but even that is in the general sense. The artwork was still beautiful, and let’s face it, he’s too busy reading to do anything else.
So this gets four elephants out of five waiting to crush you during your final throes…an absurd, but memorable, way to die.