“Delirium’s Party” by Jill Thompson
Now, I would never dare to say that Neil Gaiman’s “The Sandman” series is for kids. Anyone who’s ventured into the world of The Endless – siblings Death, Dream, Desire, Delirium, Despair, Destruction, and Destiny – knows that all kinds of complicated adult stuff happens in the legendary and award-winning graphic novels.
At some point, though, The Endless spun off into a pseudo-series called The Little Endless, which imagines the seven world-controlling brothers and sisters as children. Artist/Writer Jill Thompson (who worked on some of the original “The Sandman” novels) apparently took the inspiration from a passage in one of the books which talks about Death and Dream as children.
“Delirium’s Party,” one of the books involving The Little Endless, is adorable.
In this book, Delirium (my personal fave of The Endless) is at the whirling, swirling center of events as she (assisted by her faithful dog Barnabus) throws a party for her siblings with cake and presents and a princess crown all in the hopes of getting her sister Despair to smile.
The story is sweet and the (largely watercolor) artwork is gorgeous. As a character, the constantly-shifting Delirium has to be an artists dream. From hair made of balloons to a green suit not unlike that of Max from “Where the Wild Things Are,” Thompson had free reign in the design of Delirium, and the joy of the project shouts from the pages.
Many of these images I would literally hang on my wall.
It’s a beautifully illustrated picture book I truly enjoyed reading myself, and look forward to reading to my soon-to-be child.