The Sandman: Fables and Reflections Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 46 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Sandman.
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The Sandman: Fables and Reflections Summary & Study Guide Description

The Sandman: Fables and Reflections Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion on The Sandman: Fables and Reflections by Neil Gaiman.

THE SANDMAN: FABLES AND RECOLLECTIONS is a compilation of comic books about the popular DC/Vertigo comics character the Sandman. All are written by Neil Gaiman, but illustrations are by various artists. The nine stories included were originally sold as individual comic books in the 1990s.

The stories vary in settings, ranging from the golden ages of Rome and Baghdad to present day. The common denominator in all the stories is that Dream has some role to play in each.

The fact that eight of the nine stories were based on some historical fact adds more interest. Gene Wolfe, in his introduction to the book, claims that a reader will learn more historical information about the first and only emperor of the United States by reading "Three Septembers and a January." The only stories that are truly born of imagination, with no character of historic reference, is "The Hunt" and "Fear of Falling."

In "Fear of Falling," Dream helps a playwright and director face his fear to become successful.

In "Three Septembers and a January," Dream gives a desperate man a dream because of a challenge issued to him by his sister Despair. Joshua Norton becomes the first and only emperor of the United States. This man really existed.

Dream helps a young forest man, who also happens to be a werewolf, meet the woman of his dreams in "The Hunt." He wisely realizes the two have nothing in common and he lives happily ever after with the werewolf girl he met during the tale.

Dream is the one who needs help in "Thermidor." He asks Lady Johanna to help retrieve his son's head. This story talks of St. Just and Robspierre, both important to the French Revolution.

In "August," Dream helps Augustus find a day to think without the gods' scrutiny. The time he is able to spend without the watchful scrutiny of the gods helps him deal with his feelings of guilt and hatred for his great-uncle, Julius Caesar.

In "Soft Places," Dream does not want to help Marco Polo but does because Polo has been so polite to Dream.

Dream treats his son like the mortal he is in "Orpheus." Dream tries to counsel his son through his grief, but does not treat him any differently than he would a non-family member.

The "Parliament of Rooks" is a story about stories. Dream's only real connection to it was as a child. When he and his sister, Teleuth (death), were young, they don't have much work to do. As the reader learns in Abel's story, the youngsters are small because not many people either dream or die.

In "Ramadan," Dream teaches King Haroun Al Raschid a valuable lesson. After being summoned, Dream gives the king exactly what he says he wants... a kingdom that won't fade away, stored tightly in a jar.

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