I know Bones of the Moon by Jonathan Carroll has gotten really good reviews, and is supposed to be the source material for the Sandman graphic novels by Neil Gaiman, but 50 pages in to the story, I didn’t care about any of the characters and the only fantastical thing that had happened was the main character, a self-involved woman named Cullen, started having weird serial dreams about a talking dog and a young boy named Pepsi.
Not caring about any of the characters is bad enough, but I also didn’t care enough about the setting — switching back and forth between a sterile New York and an idyllic Europe that felt like a pretentious foreign film starring the kind of people that like pretentious foreign films. I also had a problem with Cullen having an abortion for reasons of convenience, which is just an issue of mine that other readers may not have problems with.
Taken together we have flat characters and a boring setting with a complete lack of magic — both metaphorical and literal. Life’s too short to read bad books, and this one got sent back to the library unfinished.