THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS | NEIL GAIMAN | BOOK REVIEW

Neil Gaiman is one of my author gods, I seriously worship the guy, he is quirky and kind of like Tim Burton at the start of his career, a man who sees things differently, who writes in worlds of fantasy and fable. He has written one of my all time favourite books on the planet, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and movies Stardust and Coraline are based on his work. The best part of all, he was written scripts for Doctor Who. Put it this way, when George RR Martin says “There’s no one quite like Neil Gaiman” you know the guy is unique. So when one of his books arrive in the post from Hachette Australia for review, I may have possibly jumped up and down a little bit and squealed like a new Harry Potter book had been announced. THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS is out now from Hachette Australia in hardback for about $30-. You can buy it from HERE.  

 

THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS BOOK COVER IMAGE
THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | BOOK COVER

 

REVIEW BY JASON KING

THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS is a different work of Gaiman’s. It was originally published years ago in the collection of short stories titled STORIES: ALL NEW TALES and then in 2010 Gaiman read the story out at the Sydney Opera House to a sell out crowd while the artwork of Eddie Campbell (based on the story) was projected and a they were accompanied by the FourPlay String Quartet. This book is the culmination of this collaboration. It is, basically, a short story, fable if you will, and is presented in a full coloured illustrated book.

It is an odd tale, it is about family, honour, revenge, greed and equality. It is a very dark tale, a picture book for adults, that is not a graphic novel, a book you could read to kids, but unlike the Grimm tales that were all prettied over for kids, this really does not, it has death, evil and the worst of people. It is also mystical and in true Gaiman style, magical. The thing I love about it, he wrote it for himself and for his friends who live at the place the book is inspired by, the Isle of Skye, he never chose a market for the book, he just wrote his tale.

 

THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS IMAGE
THE TRUTH IS A CAVE IN THE BLACK MOUNTAINS | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | ARTWORK BY EDDIE CAMPBELL

 

The film oozes mystical Scottish folk lore and is as beautiful as it is dark and haunting. The Black Mountains are the Black Cuillins in Skye, this is known as the Winged or Misty Isle. There is a cave there, they say, where gold is to be found, and all it will mean if you go there and take some of that gold is that you will become a little more evil….

This would actually make an incredible film, it would need to be built on but anything Gaiman does would make an awesome film. His book AMERICAN GODS is being made into a TV series at the moment. This story reminded me of Braveheart, nothing like the story itself, just that simple life and isolation of the Scottish Highlands and waters.

It is simplistic in its main theme, an eye for an eye.

I read this book in about two hours, yesterday morning, with tea and cat in bed. It is something you could read, or have a young male child read, but not too young, there is a bit of death and Eddie Campbell is a master artist, known for his comics and graphic novels, does not paint fairy tale imagery.

If you love your Gaiman, like a well illustrated illustrated short story then this is for you. A must for Gaiman collectors and a great little coffee table book for adults. Be sure to stalk Gaiman on his website or his Twitter, the guy is amazing, and if you have not read his work – hello – get online and buy THEM ALL!!

 

4 Pops