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15 December 2008 @ 11:54 am
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman  
Book Title: The Graveyard Book
Author: Neil Gaiman
Age Range: 8-15
Page Count:
Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn't live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy-an ancient Indigo Man beneath the hill, a gateway to a desert leading to an abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible menace of the Sleer. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod's family. . . .

Opinion: Neil Gaimen has numerous literary works and awards to his name, including the acclaimed Stardust which was made into a film last year and Sandman one of the most well known graphic novels of the current era. His most recent novel The Graveyard Book will no doubt join these illustrious ranks with it’s superbly crafted writing that will deefinatly be a classic. In this amazing accomplishment Gaimen makes a touching novel that combines the humor and wit of Roald Dahl with the magic of Rudyard Kipling.
It’s the story of Nobody Owens, a young boy whose family was killed. Nobody escapes the killer, a man named Jack, and the lucky toddler finds his way into a graveyard. The Owens two ghosts from 250 years ago decided to adopt the newly orphaned boy. They name him Nobody Owens (Bod for short) and The book tells of Bod’s unorthodox upbringing including the mysterious grounds keeper who is his guardian and his ghost teachers. There is his friendship with Scarlett, girls whose parents are surprised by her apparently imaginary friend living in the graveyard and with her Bod meets the Sleer an ancient and dangerous ghost guarding the oldest grave in the graveyard. Bod also learns the dangers of the graveyard when he gets kidnapped by ghouls and taken into their underground kingdom.
For all the danger, ghouls, ghosts, vampires and werewolves this book is not scary or dark. It retains a beautiful and childlike innocence. While Bod has experiences that the adult reader can clearly see the danger in, Gaimen creates a dreamlike quality throughout by never voicing the horrors that lurk in the subtext. Many of the elements that could be considered too terrifying or sinister for a child are dealt with carefully, gracefully and with incredible tact.
Gaimen has made an incredible novel that is set to be a classic and will touch hearts all over the world.

Cover Picture: