the view from the cheap seats
The View From the Cheap Seats collects many of Neil Gaiman’s reviews, speeches, introductions to books, and various non-fiction writings. This book weighs in at 544 pages so there’s plenty here to browse through. I enjoyed Gaiman’s thoughts on Harlan Ellison, Diana Wynne Jones, Terry Pratchett, and Gene Wolfe. And Gaiman has plenty to say about comic books and graphic novels, too. The writings on movies are the weakest part of this collection. But Neil Gaiman is an engaging writer with knowledge of the publishing industry. If you check out the Table of Contents below, I’m sure you’ll find some topics that will intrigue you. GRADE: A-
I Some Things I Believe
Why Our Future Depends on Libraries, Reading and Daydreaming: The Reading Agency Lecture, 2013
Telling Lies for a Living … and Why We Do It: The Newbery Medal Speech, 2009 Four Bookshops
Three Authors: On Lewis, Tolkien and Chesterton; The MythCon
Guest of Honor Speech
The Pornography of Genre, or the Genre of Pornography
Ghosts in the Machines: Some Hallowe’en Thoughts
Some Reflections on Myth (with Several Digressions onto Gardening, Comics and Fairy Tales)
How Dare You: On America, and Writing About It
All Books Have Genders
The PEN Awards and Charlie Hebdo
What the [Very Bad Swearword] Is a Children’s Book, Anyway? The Zena Sutherland Lecture
II Some People I Have Known
These Are Not Our Faces
Reflections: On Diana Wynne Jones
Terry Pratchett: An Appreciation
On Dave McKean
How to Read Gene Wolfe
Remembering Douglas Adams
Harlan Ellison: The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World
Banging the Drum for Harlan Ellison
On Stephen King, for the Sunday Times
Geoff Notkin: Meteorite Man
About Kim Newman, with Notes on the Creation and Eventual Dissolution of the Peace and Love Corporation
Gumshoe: A Book Review
Six to Six
III Introductions And Musings: Science Fiction
Fritz Leiber: The Short Stories
Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451 and What Science Fiction Is and Does
Of Time, and Gully Foyle: Alfred Bester and The Stars My Destination
Samuel R. Delany and The Einstein Intersection
On the Fortieth Anniversary of the Nebula Awards: A Speech, 2005
IV Films And Movies And Me
The Bride of Frankenstein
MirrorMask: An Introduction
MirrorMask: A Sundance Diary
The Nature of the Infection: Some Thoughts on Doctor Who
On Comics and Films: 2006
V On Comics And Some Of The People Who Make Them
Good Comics and Tulips: A Speech
A Speech to Professionals Contemplating Alternative Employment, Given at PROCON, April 1997
“But What Has That to Do with Bacchus?” Eddie Campbell and Deadface
Confessions: On Astro City and Kurt Busiek
Batman: Cover to Cover
Bone: An Introduction, and Some Subsequent Thoughts
Jack Kirby: King of Comics
The Simon and Kirby Superheroes
The Spirit of Seventy-Five
The Best of the Spirit
Will Eisner: New York Stories
The Keynote Speech for the 2003 Eisner Awards
2004 Harvey Awards Speech
The Best American Comics, 2010
VI Introductions And Contradictions
Some Strangeness in the Proportion: The Exquisite Beauties of Edgar Allan Poe
On The New Annotated Dracula
Rudyard Kipling’s Tales of Horror and Fantasy
From the Days of Future Past: The Country of the Blind and Other Stories, by H.G. Wells
Business as Usual, During Alterations: Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free, by Cory Doctorow
The Mystery of G.K. Chesterton’s Father Brown
Concerning Dreams and Nightmares: The Dream Stories of H.P. Lovecraft
On The 13 Clocks by James Thurber
Votan and Other Novels by John James
On Viriconium: Some Notes Toward an Introduction
So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish: An Introduction
Dogsbody by Diana Wynne Jones
Voice of the Fire by Alan Moore
Art and Artifice by Jim Steinmeyer
The Moth: An Introduction
VII Music And The People Who Make It
Hi, by the Way: Tori Amos
Curious Wine: Tori Amos II
Flood: Twenty-Fifth Anniversary Edition, They Might Be Giants
Lou Reed, in Memoriam: “The Soundtrack to My Life”
Waiting for the Man: Lou Reed
Afterword Afterword: Evelyn Evelyn
Who Killed Amanda Palmer
VIII ON Stardust And Fairy Tales
Once Upon a Time
Several Things About Charles Vess
The King of Elfland’s Daughter, Lord Dunsany
The Thing of It Is: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell
On Richard Dadd’s The Fairy-Feller’s Master-Stroke
IX Make Good Art
Make Good Art
X The View From The Cheap Seats: Real Things
The View from the Cheap Seats
A Wilderness of Mirrors
The Dresden Dolls: Hallowe’en 2010
Eight Views of Mount Fuji: Beloved Demons and Anthony Martignetti
So Many Ways to Die in Syria Now: May 2014
A Slip of the Keyboard: Terry Pratchett


    1. george Post author

      Jeff, Neil Gaiman covers a lot of ground in THE VIEW FROM THE CHEAP SEATS. I enjoyed Gaiman’s insights on the publishing industry and his craft.

    1. george Post author

      Maggie, there is an audio version of THE VIEW FROM FROM THE CHEAP SEATS. Just ask your local Public Library to order it for you.

  1. Richard R.

    Yes, it does sound interesting, but I’m on book overload just now, with several I’m reading or about to start, several more on hold at the library, and a toppling TBR, so this will probably never pass in front of my eyes.

    1. george Post author

      Rick, after reading THE VIEW FROM THE CHEAP SEATS I ordered several of the books Gaiman recommended. I suspect you would, too.


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