Originally Posted by Hamlet53
In fact I would have liked a lot more development of how London Below came into existence and why it was the way it was and why its relation to modern London was what it was. For instance, London Below seemed to have been populated by and culturally tied to the historical period of somewhere from Medieval times up to approximately The Renaissance. Why just that segment of history? On the other hand going into such complete development probably would have at least doubled the length of the novel and I would have probably been now complaining about its length and slow going.
Originally Posted by Synamon
I certainly would have been complaining if that was included. Tedious detail and world building is one of the the reasons I stay away from this genre.
Not explaining everything allowed for the faster pace, I'm happy with that tradeoff. It also opened up the opportunity for my own imagination to fill in the gaps. Mind the Gap!
I think that one gets a sense that the world of London Below does
have a logic and hierarchy of its own, though this is conveyed through actions and relationships rather than by editorial description. Thus, the rat-people are high on the social scale as we see by the respect they get. The Market has certain inviolable rules, the Angel Islington is imprisoned and guarded by a Labyrinth and Minotaur equivalent. All this implies a world with its own logic--though a logic far different than that in London above.
In my opinion, the lack of editorial world-building--of the sort one gets, for example, in The Farthest Shore,
the third book of the Earthsea series is an advantage as it actually makes the Neverwhere universe far more alive and vivid. It simply is
--it doesn't require or demand an explanation. This is something that Richard Mayhew must learn as he adapts to it in order to survive. And there's no doubt but that the fact that the world of London Below is present as a given does help create the effective pace and excitement generated by Gaiman. And, yes, I agree, it releases our own imaginative response!