From the publisher: The search is over. The trail is cold. A crown must be conferred. A great reception is held for the envoys and ambassadors of the outer realms—but who greets them from the throne of tales? And somewhere, out in the world, the man who tore down the King of Dreams looks upon his work...and feels nothing.
The Dreaming #12 wraps up the second arc of Simon Spurrier's new series. In this issue, we finally get an idea of what Daniel/Dream has been up to, but most of it focuses on the new temporary ruler of the Dreaming, the strange AI moth-looking thing, who I believe doesn't really have a name, at least until the end of the story. Abel is trying to keep would-be invaders out of the Dreaming, and the new ruler is forced to confront what it really is. Additionally, Dora and Matthew finish their quest, and what they find is not at all what I expected.
One of the things I usually enjoy about the Sandman books, and in this case The Dreaming, is the use of stories to explain bigger concepts, including the larger story of the book. In this case, the lord of the Dreaming tells a story/history to explain the nature of the Dreaming and Daniel's new purpose. This tale also leads to a realization about just what exactly is going on, and has potentially huge consequences for the entire Dreaming moving forward. In fact, I was really surprised by the ending (maybe I shouldn't have been, but I was focused on hoping this wasn't just a way to have a new Dream). I'm really curious as to how Spurrier is going take things moving forward. There were also several hints that Dora has a bigger part to play, and her true nature is important to that. And I'll confess, I find myself wanting to know what/who she really is moreso now than earlier in this series.
Overall, The Dreaming #12 by Simon Spurrier was a satisfactory ending to this arc, and the first dozen issues overall. Spurrier has done a nice job laying the groundwork for his run on The Dreaming and their are now several storylines that he can explore in both the near future and the long run. I'm looking forward to seeing how this develops. I highly recommend both this issue and the series.
I received a preview copy of this book from DC Comics in exchange for an honest review.