Prolific storyteller Neil Gaiman was born on this day 61 years ago. From short stories to graphic novels to nonfiction to screenplays, Gaiman has left no storytelling stone unturned. While a large swatch of his fan base are avid sci-fi and fantasy readers, Gaiman still has mass appeal. Children’s books, such as Coraline, have garnered an adult fan base. Films and television shows have been created based on his books and Gaiman has even written episodes for beloved series like Doctor Who.
Gaiman has written screeplays, produced films, and directed some too. He has an immense body of work with no signs of slowing down. The Sandman television series (based on Gaiman’s own DC Comics of the same name), a comic adaptation by Colleen Doran (from Gaiman’s Chivalry), and Miracleman comics were all released this year.
No need to be overwhelmed, though! Here’s a list of offerings in every area Gaiman has his hands.
Smoke and Mirrors: Short Fictions and Illusions
Short stories and poems make up this fantastical collection from 1998. Most of the works had been published in magazines, anthologies, or other places prior to being assembled in Smoke and Mirrors.
It may be considered a children’s book, but this creepy tale can be read at any age. Young Coraline and her parents move to a big, old house converted into apartments. Accompanied by an odd cast of characters, Coraline soon finds another world that is parallel to her own. While it seems perfect, it quickly becomes a nightmare Coraline must escape.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane
Gaiman, a master of dark fantasy and magical realism, has also proven his mastery of human connection. The narrator, returning to his town to attend a funeral, reminisces on a tragedy that he witnessed as a child. Sometimes recommended as a children’s book, this fares better for an adult reflecting on their childhood.
This is a collection of Gaiman’s essays and introductions and includes the original weblog of American Gods, before it was written into a novel.
Don’t Panic: The Official Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Companion
Not just a companion guide into The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (a wonderfully absurd science fiction series), this nonfiction work is also a biography of the author Douglas Adams.
The DC Universe by Neil Gaiman
This comic collection contains Batman, Superman, and Metamorpho. Published in 2016, the comics span from 1989-2013.
This is a collection from DC that includes several hard-to-find works from Gaiman’s earlier days. It includes comics centered around the Sandman, John Constantine, and the Floronic Man.
Films and Television
In addition to providing the source material, Gaiman was a writer and executive producer for this television series adaptation.
As New Gods gain prominence, the Old Gods worry they are becoming irrelevant. Shadow Moon, recently released from prison, becomes embroiled in this world of magic and the mission of uniting the Old Gods to rebuild their status.
Originally released in Japan, this is a classic film from Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli. Gaiman wrote the script when it was dubbed for English in 1999.