Neil Gaiman is a name synonymous with comic books. He is an English author who has been in the comic book business since the 80s. He's known for such titles as Miracleman, The Sandman, The Eternals, etc.
Gaiman has toiled in every form of writing imaginable. Before comics, he did some work in journalism and had some short stories published. He eventually wrote full-length novels, did some screenwriting, and periodically tweets and blogs.
In 2007, his novel, Stardust, was adapted to the big screen and starred Hollywood heavy-hitters, Robert De Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer. Eventually, another book of his, Coraline, would become a stop-motion feature film.
Gaiman's way with words is inspiring and has been immortalized in libraries across the globe.
Most enjoyable Neil Gaiman comics
1) American Gods
Originally a novel that Dark Horse Comics would subsequently adopt, American Gods is about a man thrust into a world of mythology and intrigue. As the protagonist, Shadow, learns, all the old pantheons of gods, from Zeus to Odin, exist.
Along with these old gods are the new gods. The latter is the personification of aspects of the modern world.
American Gods follows a former inmate, Shadow Moon. He is hired by Mr. Wednesday to be his bodyguard and, along the way, thrust into a world he had only ever read about.
2) Books of Magic
Books of Magic is a four-part mini-series that follows a boy, Timothy Hunter. The teenager goes on a journey of self-discovery to become the greatest wizard the universe has seen.
The series takes place within the DC Universe, exploring its more magical side and acting as a tour for the readers through it. The mini-series became popular enough to warrant an ongoing series published under DC's Vertigo imprint.
3) Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader
Neil Gaiman partnered with Andy Kubert and Scott Williams for a story published in two parts. One phase would be seen in Batman #686 and the other in Detective Comics #853. It was a bookend that wrapped up Bruce Wayne's fate from Final Crisis and Batman R.I.P. when he eventually died.
The story saw villains and allies alike come together for Batman's funeral. The title directly referenced Alan Moore's Superman story from the 70s, Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow.
4) Marvel 1602
After writing for DC Comics for some time, Gaiman eventually went over to Marvel. He was given the reins of Marvel 1602, a story about the Marvel Universe during Elizabethan times.
Fans follow Queen Elizabeth I's court physician, Doctor Stephen Strange, as he investigates odd happenings around Europe.
Andy Kubert's pencils beautifully match Gaiman's writing style and are further brought to life by Richard Isanove's digital painting. It's an experience Gaiman fans should not miss.
Stardust was initially conceived as a storybook with pictures by Neil Gaiman and artist Charles Vess. Reminiscent of a Tolkein tale, Stardust is beautifully enhanced by the painted illustrations of Vess.
It is a fairytale of sorts in the Victorian era and set in a village called Wall. A boy sets out on a journey to win a woman's hand in marriage. This boy, Tristan, is thrust into a world unimaginable when he ventures off to retrieve a falling star.
6) The Sandman
If there is one comic synonymous with Neil Gaiman, it is The Sandman. He perfectly blends history with mythology in this comic, published by DC Comics in 1989 and which continues to be discussed today.
The story follows the character Dream, the personification of dreams. After escaping seventy-year imprisonment, he goes on to rebuild his kingdom in the Dreaming.
The comic is a pleasant blend of traditional mythological symbology with gothic horror elements. It is storytelling at its finest.
Coraline was originally a novella, and it wasn't until 2008 that it would be transformed into a graphic novel. Artist P. Craig Russell worked with Neil Gaiman to make this happen.
It would also become a full-length feature film directed by Henry Selick. The film was unique in that it used stop-motion animation.
The story follows the titular Coraline as she discovers a world that mirrors her own but isn't everything it seems to be. It's much more, and Coraline eventually realizes there is something wrong.
8) Murder Mysteries
Who doesn't love a good murder mystery? What about one with angels in Heaven?
Murder Mysteries follows the angel Raguel as he is given the task of investigating the murder of another angel. It's an intriguing tale that features a setting and characters previously established in The Sandman.
The comic is non-linear as it is a story being told to another character within it. The ending of the tale is left up to the reader's interpretation.
Originally published in 1992 as a short story, Gaiman would team up with P. Craig Russell to adapt it into a graphic novel.
9) Signal to Noise
In 1989, Signal to Noise was initially serialized in the United Kingdom magazine The Face. By 1992, it would be collected and published as a graphic novel in the United States by Dark Horse Comics.
Illustrated by Dave McKean, the art adds to the emotions the main character is experiencing. Three other adaptations of this story were made: a radio broadcast by the BBC, a stage play, and a short film.
It's a story about a filmmaker who desperately wants to make one last film, but he knows it will never happen because he is suffering from a terminal illness. It explores the relationship between images of the filmmaker's imagined global apocalypse and his own personal, internalized apocalypse.
10) Death: The High Cost of Living
Readers who read The Sandman will remember Death as the protagonist's sister. The High Cost of Living was a three-issue mini-series published by the DC imprint Vertigo.
It follows Death assuming the human form of a girl named DiDi. Death does this from time to time to walk amongst mortals to stay informed of their progress through life.
Death ends up aiding almost anyone she comes across, helping her understand humanity in the process. There was supposed to be a movie adaptation, but that idea has been on hold since 2010.
Note: This article reflects the author's views.