27.3.10

Book Review: The Graveyard Book my Neil Gaiman


Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a perfectly normal boy. Well, he would be perfectly normal if he didn't live in a graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living or the world of the dead.
There are dangers and adventures for Bod in the graveyard: The strange and terrible menace of the Sleer; a gravestone entrance to a desert that leads to the city of Ghouls; friendship with a witch and so much more.
But it is in the land of the living that real danger lurks for it is there that The Man Jack lives and he has already killed Bod's family.

I had been meaning to read The Graveyard Book for ages as I had heard so many wonderful things about it. I was not disappointed, Neil Gaiman's story is fascinating and I finished it in one sitting as I had to find out Bod's fate.
Neil Gaiman has talked of the influence that Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book had on this story. Obviously the ghosts and ghouls take the place of the animals but the sentiment is the same. Gaiman is exploring life as an outsider; Bod knows very little of where he came from and could not be more different from those who have raised him.
The Man Jack is a terrifying creation and his presence hangs over the whole book. Neil Gaiman gives his reader so many fascinating characters whilst holding back little secrets so that we are left wanting more.
The graveyard gives Bod the security and protection that he needs but there are still many adventures to be had and danger is often lurking just around the corner.
I can understand why so many adults and children have raved about this book. The story of Bod is exciting but also has so many elements for the reader to identify with. If you haven't read The Graveyard Book then I highly recommend it.

5 comments:

Luisa at Chicklish said...

I read this out aloud to my son recently, though it took us a lot more than one sitting! We both enjoyed it a lot, though. Great review!

Kim said...

This sounds really interesting and a bit different. I will look out for The Graveyeard Book now. Lovely review, Dot.

Dot said...

Luisa- I really enjoyed it, I will be reading more Gaiman!

Kim- Thank you, it is very different but very good!

Paperback Reader said...

The Graveyard Book is a delightful book. I love Neil Gaiman and think that you would enjoy Neverwhere, which is about an underground London (not the tube!)

Dot said...

Paperback Reader- Thank you for the recommendation, I shall definitely be reading more of his books in the future.

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