Fragile Things

  • by Neil Gaiman
  • Narrated by Neil Gaiman
  • 10 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

A mysterious circus terrifies an audience for one extraordinary performance before disappearing into the night, taking one of the spectators along with it. In a novella set two years after the events of American Gods, Shadow pays a visit to an ancient Scottish mansion, and finds himself trapped in a game of murder and monsters.
In a Hugo Award-winning short story set in a strangely altered Victorian England, the great detective Sherlock Holmes must solve a most unsettling royal murder.
Two teenage boys crash a party and meet the girls of their dreams and nightmares.
In a Locus Award-winning tale, the members of an excusive epicurean club lament that they've eaten everything that can be eaten, with the exception of a legendary, rare, and exceedingly dangerous Egyptian bird.
Such marvelous creations and more, including a short story set in the world of The Matrix and others set in the worlds of gothic fiction and children's fiction, can be found in this extraordinary collection, which showcases Gaiman's storytelling brilliance as well as his entertaining (and dark) sense of humor. By turns delightful, disturbing, and diverting, Fragile Things is a gift of literary enchantment from one of the most unique writers of our time.


What the Critics Say

Locus Award, Best Collection, 2007

Audie Award Finalist, Short Stories, Collections, 2007


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Perhaps a different format?

Neil Gaiman is probably my favorite author to listen to in audio format out there. I have listened to nearly everything he's ever written that's been recorded and consider "The Graveyard Book" the closest thing to a perfect audio book ever produced. So I had looked forward with anticipation to "sinking my ears into it" when I downloaded this book. It unfortunately fell a bit short of my expectations.

So what's wrong with this one? Well... a number of little things that add up to enough to make me unable to give it more than 3 stars. The stories are generally good, though some certainly better than others, and Neil reading them is always a bonus, as he reads his work so well. But, perhaps (and probably) because it is in an audio format, one does not really have the time to digest the individual pieces. There is mere seconds of transition time between the various stories/poems/commentary. If you listen to your books while doing tasky things, as I often do, it is not feasible to stop between pieces, digest the tale, think about the work, etc. Some of the pieces are short enough and esoteric enough that it is not automatically clear that one story's ended and another begun. I think it likely that, had I read this book in paper format, I might have had a different experience.

That said, in the end the book is redeemed by the novella taking up with the character Shadow from "American Gods". It is epic enough, long enough and in keeping enough with the original tale that it made muddling through the rest of the book worth it. I have no regrets for having added this title to my Gaiman library, but it falls rather to the bottom of the list.
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- Karen


Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite authors, and he didn't disappoint with this audiobook. It's a real treat to hear him read his own work, and as a collection of short stories (collected from anthologies, primarily), Fragile Things is an excellent introduction to the breadth of Gaiman's talent. His stories range from epic (as in Sunbird) to mundane with a twist (How to Talk to Girls at Parities).

I'm thrilled that Audible offered this book, and I hpe they continue to add science fiction and fantasy to their libraries.
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- Amy L Gantt

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-26-2006
  • Publisher: HarperAudio