Trigger Warning Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 61 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Trigger Warning.
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Trigger Warning Summary & Study Guide Description

Trigger Warning 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 Quotes and a Free Quiz on Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman.

Trigger Warning is the 3rd collection of short fiction by Neil Gaiman, celebrated author of such works as The Sandman, The Graveyard Book, and Coraline. Trigger Warning contains not just short stories but some poetry as well. In the Introduction, Gaiman explains that the themes that connect the majority of the works within the text are death, abuse, and fear. He goes on to explain that these themes are examples of things that generally warrant trigger warnings at the beginning of possibly offensive or troubling fiction.

The majority of the works within the text are stand-alone pieces of fiction and not connected to any of Gaiman’s previous works. “Black Dog” is the sole exception. The protagonist of “Black Dog” is Shadow Moon, the main character of Gaiman’s 2001 novel, American Gods. "Black Dog" story takes place a year after the events of the aforementioned novel, nevertheless the story can be understood without having read the previous prior text.

Inversely, the story “Nothing O’ Clock,” takes place within the universe of the BBC’s popular science fiction program “Doctor Who.” Due to this, the story in question may be hard to understand without prior knowledge of the show.

There are four poems within the book. The first, “Making a Chair,” uses an extended simile, comparing the act of writing to building a manufactured chair. “My Last Landlady,” is a character’s recollection of his encounter with a deranged landlady. The penultimate poem, “Observing the Formalities,” regards the nature of certain human practices and how they are simply unnecessary formalities. The final poem is “In Relig Odhrain,” a retelling of a story about a sixth-century Irish Saint.

The remainder of the works are quite different in subject matter and form. For example, “A Calendar of Tales” is the result of an experimental and collaborative writing project involving Twitter-based content suggestions. The form of the piece “Orange” is quite peculiar as well. The implied setting of the work is some sort of interrogation, and interestingly, the reader is only privy to the answers of the character, Jemima Glorfindel Petula Ramsey. In addition, the story “The Return of the Thin White Duke,” is based off of one the alter-egos of famous recording artist David Bowie.

The remainder of the works generally follow the standard short story format of a shorter but complete work of prose that tells at least one complete plot. Some, like “The Truth is a Cave in the Black Mountains” (which was previously published as a short graphic novel) and The others are typical of Neil Gaiman’s other work—stories of the supernatural, the weird, and the deadly.

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