10 books like The Sandman Vol. 4

By Neil Gaiman, Kelley Jones (illustrator),

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like The Sandman Vol. 4. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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The Book Thief

By Markus Zusak,

Book cover of The Book Thief

The story unfolds somewhat mysteriously, in that WWII historians may be a bit confused. The annihilation of Dresden, Germany through intense fire-bombing by the allies leaves little hope that anyone could survive long, yet a young girl is moving through the neighborhoods unscathed. She steals books from the library of a rich, sophisticated lady who has all but surrendered to her fate. The premise provides a nice counter to the book burning by the Nazis in the years leading up to military action. Although the girl is hardly a military hero, her persistence and courage renders her a testament to the raw power of the human spirit. In her own way, she is defiant of the aggressors attacking her home and threatening her life.

The Book Thief

By Markus Zusak,

Why should I read it?

24 authors picked The Book Thief as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Life affirming, triumphant and tragic . . . masterfully told. . . but also a wonderful page-turner' Guardian
'Brilliant and hugely ambitious' New York Times
'Extraordinary' Telegraph
___

HERE IS A SMALL FACT - YOU ARE GOING TO DIE

1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier.
Liesel, a nine-year-old girl, is living with a foster family on Himmel Street. Her parents have been taken away to a concentration camp. Liesel steals books. This is her story and the story of the inhabitants of her street when the bombs begin to fall.

SOME IMPORTANT…


Reaper Man

By Terry Pratchett,

Book cover of Reaper Man

I got this book in the airport on my way back from a summer spent in England studying King Arthur (both the legend and the historical figure). Reaper Man was my introduction to Pratchett and I am grateful every day that I chose this and not the book on the fall of Rome that was also in the running for my attention. Pratchett’s Death is a delight, especially in this outing where he has lost his job and takes up work on a farm to help bring in the harvest. Unfortunately, his absence causes all kinds of problems (at least until a new Death is created to take his position) and ends up involving an undead wizard, a support group for various monsters, and a sentient compost heap. Also Death rides a horse named Binky! Equal turns hilarious and biting, Reaper Man is still one of my comfort reads.

Reaper Man

By Terry Pratchett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Reaper Man as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the "Discworld" humorous fantasy series. Death is missing. Dead Rights activist Reg Shoe suddenly has more work than he'd ever dreamed of, and newly-deceased wizard Windle Poons wakes up in his coffin to find that he has come back as a corpse.


Pretty Deadly Volume 1

By Kelly Sue DeConnick,

Book cover of Pretty Deadly Volume 1: The Shrike

The first time I saw Pretty Deadly on the shelves at my local comic book store, I was fascinated and chilled by the cover art, and the story within did not disappoint. This Eisner-Award-nominated graphic novel by Captain Marvel writer Kelly Sue DeConnick melds Western and horror genres for a macabre tale about Death’s daughter, Deathface Ginny, riding a horse made of smoke and wind across the harsh and unrelenting landscapes of a brutal Wild West, doling out retribution. I love me some grim reaping, and the same dark, evocative imager. I love me some grim reaping, and I wanted the same dark, evocative imagery to come through on my pages and through Hettie’s own journey with the cursed gun Diablo at her side.   

Pretty Deadly Volume 1

By Kelly Sue DeConnick,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Pretty Deadly Volume 1 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kelly Sue DeConnick (Avengers Assemble, Captain Marvel) and Emma Rios (Dr. Strange, Osborn) present the collected opening arc of their surprise-hit series that marries the magical realism of Sandman with the western brutality of Preacher. Death's daughter rides the wind on a horse made of smoke and her face bears the skull marks of her father. Her origin story is a tale of retribution as beautifully lush as it is unflinchingly savage.

"It's a perfect match for the gorgeous, dizzying artwork in a sumptuous palette-overlaid panels add intricate choreography to fight scenes, and detailed, whirling splash pages beg for long-lingering…


On a Pale Horse

By Piers Anthony,

Book cover of On a Pale Horse

This is the first in his Incarnations of Immortality and I read this book when I was likely in middle school. While I was disappointed in later books in the series, On a Pale Horse still holds up pretty well. An ordinary guy shoots Death and then must take up his mantle. He has no idea how to do the job. While not laugh out loud funny, like Pratchett, Pale Horse has its moments of humor—the scene where Death collects the soul of an atheist comes to mind. It asks the questions about what life means, examines what might happen in the afterlife, and wonders if death/Death is really something to fear.

On a Pale Horse

By Piers Anthony,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked On a Pale Horse as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this first novel of the Incarnations of Immortality, Piers Anthony combines a gripping story of romance and conflicting loyalties with a deeply moving examination of the meaning of life and death. This is a novel that will long linger in the reader's mind. 

Shooting Death was a mistake, as Zane soon discovered. For the man who killed the Incarnation of Death was immediately forced to assume the vacant position! Thereafter, he must speed over the world, riding his pale horse, and ending the lives of others. 

Zane was forced to accept his unwelcome task, despite the rules that seemed…


The Sandman Vol. 1

By Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth (illustrator), Mike Dringenberg (illustrator)

Book cover of The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes & Nocturnes

I love this graphic novel about Morpheus the God of Dreams and the other gods that inhabit humanity’s unconscious aka the Endless. He escapes from imprisonment and struggles to rebuild our dreamworld called The Dreaming. I love that Morpheus’ problems are basically the same as ours. He’s trying to find his place in a world with surprising traps and a constantly evolving understanding of what it means.

The Sandman Vol. 1

By Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth (illustrator), Mike Dringenberg (illustrator)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Sandman Vol. 1 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New York Times best-selling author Neil Gaiman's transcendent series THE SANDMAN is often hailed as the definitive Vertigo title and one of the finest achievements in graphic storytelling. Gaiman created an unforgettable tale of the forces that exist beyond life and death by weaving ancient mythology, folklore and fairy tales with his own distinct narrative vision. In PRELUDES and NOCTURNES, an occultist attempting to capture Death to bargain for eternal life traps her younger brother Dream instead. After his 70 year imprisonment and eventual escape, Dream, also known as Morpheus, goes on a quest for his lost objects of power.…


The Sandman Vol. 3

By Neil Gaiman, Kelley Jones (illustrator),

Book cover of The Sandman Vol. 3: Dream Country

As someone who spends my happiest moments in entirely made-up places with people who, it pains me to write, don’t actually exist, I am obsessed with the wavy lines between the life we imagine and the life we live. And no one writes about that cloudy blue haze between reality and our interior world better than Neil Gaiman. Shakespeare is glimpsed in other parts of the epic Sandman saga, but it is in the stand-alone story A Midsummer Night’s Dream where he is the star. It is both delightful and disturbing in a way that Gaiman is a master of.

The Sandman Vol. 3

By Neil Gaiman, Kelley Jones (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Sandman Vol. 3 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The third book of the Sandman collection is a series of four short comic book stories. In each of these otherwise unrelated stories, Morpheus serves only as a minor character. Here we meet the mother of Morpheus s son, find out what cats dream about, and discover the true origin behind Shakespeare s A Midsummer s Night Dream. The latter won a World Fantasy Award for best short story, the first time a comic book was given that honor. Collects THE SANDMAN #17-20.


The Snowman

By Raymond Briggs,

Book cover of The Snowman

This has it all. Every time I see the cover I think of the house where I grew up and I can picture the scene in the lounge on Christmas morning where I’m sorting the presents into piles for when my grandparents arrive, while watching this on BBC2. One year I got given it as a book, and it was a different experience to read it, but just as lovely.

The Snowman

By Raymond Briggs,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Snowman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An activity book based on the animated film of Raymond Briggs' The Snowman. Children of all ages will enjoy exploring the fun and excitement of Christmas with this festive book packed with things to do and make.


In the Night Kitchen

By Maurice Sendak,

Book cover of In the Night Kitchen

The best book ever of all time, for instructing humans how to be more human is Where the Wild Things Are. I think you probably already know that those pages are complete perfection. So I will now turn your attention to Mr. Sendak’s other completely perfect pages of In the Night Kitchen. Maybe the second-best book ever of all time.

In the Night Kitchen

By Maurice Sendak,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In the Night Kitchen as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the acclaimed author-artist Maurice Sendak comes a Caldecott Honor-winning tale of a fantastical dream world. This comic fantasy will delight readers of all ages with playful illustrations and an imaginative world only Sendak could create.

In the Night Kitchen is the classic story of Mickey's adventures in the bakers’ kitchen as they prepare our morning cake. "Milk in the batter! Milk in the batter! We bake cake and nothing’s the matter!" the bakers sing.

The bakers in the night kitchen need more milk for their batter, but then Mickey falls into the cake! They decide to put him in…


The Dream and the Underworld

By James Hillman,

Book cover of The Dream and the Underworld

James Hillman is the kind of writer you sometimes have to stop, think and re-read, to work your way into what he is trying to say, but it repays the effort because what he says is always interesting. This book, about fantasy and imagination, explores the idea that we are more than our personal story, more than ego and self. For me as a writer, it changed the way I see the creative process, with imagination not being something we need to spark and drive, but a space we already inhabit. Imagination is our essence; we are the dream.

The Dream and the Underworld

By James Hillman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Dream and the Underworld as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In a deepening of the thinking begun in The Myth of Analysis and Re-Visioning Psychology, James Hillman develops the first new view of dreams since Freud and Jung.


The Art of Dreaming

By Carlos Castaneda,

Book cover of The Art of Dreaming

This book, like the previous one, is written by an anthropologist, and it describes the author’s experiences of learning dreaming techniques from a Toltec sorcerer. In that tradition, there are seven Gates of Dreaming, obstacles to be overcome if you want to achieve greater dream awareness and control, and the book looks at four of them. It’s thought-provoking but easy reading because it takes the form of a story, rather than a series of essays, and I enjoyed trying some of the ideas in my own dream practice.

The Art of Dreaming

By Carlos Castaneda,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Art of Dreaming as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Bestselling author Carlos Castaneda introduces readers to the worlds that exist within their dreams.


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