I try to highlight new releases closer to their release date so that it is more timely for ordering or going out and hunting down a copy if you, dear readers, are interested. I've learned over the years that only a small percentage of SurLaLune's visitors preorder. I am the monarch of preordering, much comforted by the knowledge that desired objects will arrive on my doorstep and I won't have to go hunting anything down. The vagaries of inventory stocking have caused me no end of frustration over the years... Never mind that my closest bookstore is now over ten miles away and not convenient nor worth visiting regularly. The best are even further away, grrrrr....
Anyway, since this is now all over the internet, I thought I would go ahead and finalize my own post despite the release date not happening until the end of this month. On April 27th, Instructions by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess will be officially released.
I doubt I need to say much about either here. Neil Gaiman is, well, Neil Gaiman. Charles Vess, ditto. For example, they have previously collaborated on Blueberry Girl and The Sandman and Stardust which may be somewhat familiar to you. Both gentlemen should be familiar to fairy tale afficiandos.
Now Gaiman's text is far from new, but Vess's illustrations are. Instructions has not previously been so beautifully packaged having only appeared in anthologies. It is also available online for reading at: Instructions by Neil Gaiman. So you can preview the text if you haven't read it, fall in love and then decide to add this to your library.
There is also a wonderful promotional video: From Neil Gaiman's blog:
This is an animation of Charles Vess's art, turning Pencils into Paintings, with me saying the poem over it, to promote the book of INSTRUCTIONS we've done. And it is so beautiful. I am really proud of the job that the Harper's team did on this. I want to make everyone watch it.
Besides, this April is also National Poetry Month in the U.S., so I thought I would at least devote a week to fairy tale themed poetry. Instructions makes a perfect way to kick it off being one of my favorite fairy tale poems.