Monday, October 13, 2008

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

I read this much-anticipated young adult novel over the weekend, and I have to say that I did enjoy it quite a bit. It's geared towards a younger audience, but I didn't really feel as if I were reading a young adult novel. The story is about Nobody "Bod" Owens who is being raised in a cemetery. His parents and sister were brutally murdered when he was just a baby by the man Jack. We don't know until much later in the story why they were murdered. However, Bod escapes the same fate by toddling up the hill into the local cemetery. After much debate among the residents of the cemetery Mr. & Mrs. Owens, who never had children when they were alive, agree to care for young Bod. However, the problem is that they aren't allowed to leave the cemetery and therefore won't be able to find food for their young charge. So, they turn to Silas who is neither dead nor alive and therefore can leave the cemetery to get the necessary things to care for Bod. As long as Bod doesn't leave the cemetery, he is safe from any harm. For he's told from a young age that his life is in danger if he ever leaves the cemetery. For many years, Bod seems content to live among the dead residents of the cemetery where he learns much about life lived throughout history. Of course, as he nears young adulthood, he longs to experience life for himself despite the obvious danger. At the same time, the forces of evil are gathering and Silas must put himself in danger to protect Bod once and for all. This is an enjoyable read and one that I think will be a big hit for both YA readers and fans of Neil Gaiman.

8 comments:

Literary Feline said...

I definitely must read this one. Yours is the second positive review I have read today of it. I enjoy Neil Gaiman's writing very much and your comment about it not feeling like you were reading a YA novel, makes it even more appealing to me. Great review!

Lisa said...

literary feline, I have a feeling we'll all be hearing a lot more about this one.

Ravenous Reader said...

I see so many of my book blogging friends who are raving about Neil Gaiman, and I've never read anything of his. I know he's quite prolific, and I wonder what's the best book to start with...any suggestions?

Nymeth said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it so much, Lisa. I did too :)

Sarah said...

I haven't read any Neil Gaiman before, although many book bloggers I respect love him. I might start with The Graveyard book, it sounds fun!

Andrea said...

Sounds fascinating! I am going to add it to my TBR list!

Andi said...

CAN'T WAIT to get my hands on this one! I'll be stealing it from a friend as soon as she's done. hehe

Lisa said...

ravenous reader, I'm pretty new to Gaiman, as well. I learned about him from the blogging community and thought I'd give him a try. I think either this book or Coraline would be good places to start. He writes both YA and adult fiction, but again his YA doesn't really feel that much like your typical YA.

nymeth, I did, it was really fun! It was just spooky enough without being over the top.

sarah, this would be a good one to start with. I also recommend Coraline. It's really short and quite good, as well.

andrea, I hope you do give it a try. You shouldn't have any trouble finding his books in the library (although there may be a waiting list!).

andi, I don't think you'll be disappointed.