I found that reviewing Dream Country was more difficult than reviewing Preludes and Nocturnes and The Doll’s House.
The first two volumes had story arcs that linked all the issues together like a serial.
This volume however is simply four original, standalone stories with only a few themes and characters connecting them.
I won’t lie that I was a little disappointed at first.
I really liked the arcs that Doll’s House set up and was looking forward to seeing them continued. I then discovered when reading the introduction by Steve Erickson that those arcs are actually continued in the fourth volume Season of Mists.
I put that nuisance aside and read on.
While Dream Country isn’t the third volume I anticipated its still quite magical for what it is.
It’s a collection of four great Sandman tales, each varying in character, setting, theme and tone.
Calliope is a depressing story about a muse getting enslaved by an ambitious, failing writer.
A Dream of a Thousand Cats is a wonderful fantasy about cats dreaming for a world where they rule over man.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a quirky and amusing re-telling of the Shakespeare play and Facade is another depressing story about a lonely ex-superhero wanting to die.
Out of the four stories I think Calliope is the strongest. To me there were more beats in the plot than the other stories and therefore it felt more engaging.
I also thought that the story’s protagonist was the strongest. He is a failing writer wanting to succeed with his art which I thought made him more empathetic despite the horrible things he does.
Overall, Dream Country is definitely worth a read. It doesn’t add a lot to the main arc but it makes for an impressive anthology.
Dream Country earns a wonderful 7 out of 10.
UPDATE: I’ve uploaded a teaser trailer for a project I’ve been working on. You can see it right here.