Once upon a time, there was a four-part comic book mini-series written by Neil Gaiman called The Books Of Magic, which set out to redefine the DC Magical universe and also tied in with Sandman. Introducing a young bespectacled schoolboy, Tim Hunter, destined to be the world’s greatest magician – if he chose to be – and his magical pet owl.
You can see why a few people rubbed their chin when Harry Potter became popular.
Vertigo also published a long-running spinoff series from John Ney Reiber and Peter Gross which looked at Tim Hunter’s exploration of said universe, the adult he was growing into as well as the family he built up on the way. Neil Gaiman was supposed to be a consultant on the series but, as it put it, any notes he gave were always too late to be used – according to DC anyway.
Well… I hope you enjoyed those issues. Because the new Books Of Magic appears to junk everything after that first initial mini-series. And the Sandman Universe Presents line, with Neil Gaiman actually being involved this time, is going back to basics with Kat Howard and Tom Fowler.
Tim Hunter is back in school, he is dreaming of the events of the original series and his choice, to choose magic, has been taken. But it looks a far hardly slog for the boy, for who magic is not coming naturally, or at least not how he wants it to be.
Handily Dr Rose is his school teacher – the DC second half of the Dr Occult character. And is taking a keen interest in his magical education as well as his school life.
But he no longer has friends. His family are absent. And there are enemies all around – the Fates have decreed it.
The allegory is plain. Books are magic. Reading books opens up worlds. But there are people who believe that some books should not be read. And they will want to stop people reading such books.
One for the CBLDF to champion? Published on Wednesday…
BOOKS OF MAGIC #1 (MR)
(W) Kat Howard (A) Tom Fowler (CA) Kai Carpenter
From the SANDMAN UNIVERSE #1, it’s the return of Neil Gaiman’s magical morality fable in an all-new series written by Kat Howard (Roses and Rot, An Unkindness of Magicians) and drawn by Tom Fowler (DOOM PATROL)!
Timothy Hunter may be destined to become the most powerful magician in the universe, but he’s still a London teenager, and having magical abilities complicates things more than it helps. It’s not like he can use magic to pass his exams, stop being bullied or convince his cute friend to date him. And while Tim’s trying to live his life, there are cultists who want to kill him, believing his power will eventually corrupt him into becoming a merciless mage. Oh, and those are the good guys. Luckily, his new substitute teacher is more than she appears, and may be able to help Tim discover the mystery behind the Books of Magic…In Shops: Oct 24, 2018