Title: The Sandman: Fables & Reflections.
Author: Neil Gaiman.
Artist: Dave McKean, Stan Woch, Dick Giordano, Bryan Talbot, Shawn McManus, Duncan Eagleson, Vince Locke, John Watkiss, Jill Thompson, P. Craig Russell, Mark Buckingham, and Kent Williams.
Genre: Fiction, literature, fantasy, romance, mythology, short stories.
Publication Date: 1991-1993.
Summary: A collection of short one-issue stories, which continues the fantastical epic of Morpheus, the King of Dreams, as he observes and interacts with an odd assortment of historical and fictional characters throughout time. Featuring tales of kings, explorers, spies, and werewolves, this book of myth and imagination delves into the dark dreams of Augustus Caesar, Marco Polo, Cain and Abel, Norton I, and Orpheus to illustrate the effects that these subconscious musings have had on the course of history and mankind.
My rating: 9/10.
♥ "He's not mine... is he? His madness... His madness keeps him sane."
♥ “Liberty is a bitch who must be bedded on a mattress of corpses.”*
♥ I had crost the Channel without incident; and I had, with Ease, made the acquaintance of Louis St. J—. As I have remarked earlier in these journals, those who consider themselves the Stronger Sex are, in many matters, more tractable than Children, when their Passions are to be Gratified. In short, Men have a Fund of Gullibility, and (as my readers must by now have gathered) one I have never shrunk from Exploiting when it met my Purpose. St. J— imprudently told me the whereabouts of my quarry, little realizing to whom he spoke; thus it was not long before I had betaken myself to the Crypt, and gained myself what I sought. Where there is Life, there also is Hope, they say. But my Death waited for me then, in the Place de la Revolution, at the edge of a Weighted Blade; and at that Time, and in that Place, I could foresee no way to avoid it.
♥ "My father says that the things you showed me are valueless. Gewgaws and trinkets."
"...Value's in what people think. Not in what's real. Value's in dreams, boy."
♥ "I am not a vain man, Lycius. This name I have taken: Augustus. It was not taken from vanity, but from piety, trusting that my reign would augur well for Rome."
"You named this month after you, though. It used to be Sextilus. Now it's August. You did that."
"That will not last. In another decade this month will probably be called Tiberius... We write our names in the sand; and then the waves roll in and wash them away. But we can leave things behind us. I am leaving an Empire."
♥ "And also, I might add, taking the recollection of being summoned, peremptorily, as one might summon a steward. I am no steward, O King. And I mislike summonings."
"There is a tale they tell me of a fisherman who caught a jade bottle in his nets, who opened the bottle and released a genie..."
"In the tale he talked the genie back into the bottle. But the Genie was foolish, and boastful, and lonely. I am none of these things. You have called me here, Haroun. It is unwise to summon what you cannot dismiss."
*The character Louis Antoine Léon de Saint-Just, and this quote, is taken from history and is not attributable to the Gaiman. Quoted here because though I find that particular quote compelling, I am unlikely ever to read anything by him.