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Coraline [Paperback]

Neil Gaiman
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (152 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
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Book Description

20 Dec 2008
When a young girl ventures through a hidden door, she finds another life with shocking similarities to her own. Coraline has moved to a new house with her parents and she is fascinated by the fact that their 'house' is in fact only half a house! Divided into flats years before, there is a brick wall behind a door where once there was a corridor. One day it is a corridor again and the intrepid Coraline wanders down it. And so a nightmare-ish mystery begins that takes Coraline into the arms of counterfeit parents and a life that isn't quite right. Can Coraline get out? Can she find her real parents? Will life ever be the same again?

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Coraline + The Graveyard Book + M is for Magic
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Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC; film tie-in ed edition (20 Dec 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747597308
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747597308
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (152 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 88,543 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

Despite being mostly known for his fantastical graphic novels and adult fiction, Neil Gaiman's first book for children is everything that you would expect from such a massive imagination as his. It's special and wonderful and very weird indeed. Described by some as the new Alice in Wonderland, Coraline is actually more bizarre than that, much more frightening and its modest length definitely adds to the book's undiluted potency.

Shortly after moving into an old house with strange tenants above and below, Coraline discovers a big, carved, brown wooden door at the far corner of the drawing room. And it is locked. Curiosity runs riot in Coraline's mind and she unlocks the door to see what lies behind it. Disappointingly, it opens onto a brick wall. Days later, after exploring the rest of the house and garden, Coraline returns to the same mysterious door and opens it again. This time, however, there is a dark hallway in front of her. Stepping inside, the place beyond has an eerie familiarity about it. The carpet and wallpaper are the same as in her flat. The picture hanging on the wall is the same. Almost. Strangest of all, her mum and dad are there too. Only they have buttons for eyes and seem more possessive than normal. It's a twisted version of her world that is familiar, and yet sinister. And matters get even more surreal for Coraline when her "other" parents seem reluctant to let her leave.

Her attempted escape from this nightmare alternative reality sees Coraline experience a chilling series of ever more bizarre encounters. Some are plainly odd, others disturbingly spooky and together they combine to form an immensely readable story. It's like all the best bits of the Goosebumps books condensed into 160 pages. A unique reading experience guaranteed. (Ages 10 and over)--John McLay --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


`Beautiful and haunting ... A master modern fable'
-- Waterstone's Guide to Kid's Books, February 2009

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
50 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing in the best possible way 27 Nov 2006
I discovered this book a little over four years ago. It was the first Gaimain novel I had come across, and remains--despite my delving into the fascinating depths of Neverwhere's London Below, the dangerous beauty of Stardust's Faerie and all the rest--my absolute favourite of all his works. His clear, unconvuluted style is really allowed to shine through here as this story is primarily for children, giving a wonderfully bleak, chilly feel. Also, Gaiman's masterful tendency of leaving much unexplained and not feeling the need to rationalise the extraordinary is, no doubt one that will appeal to children greatly.

Admittedly, the basic idea of a 'Looking-Glass' world is not original, but the intricacies of the storyline certainly are. This novel has that feel that so many horror films try (and largely fail) to obtain with their demonic children and evil dollies; Coraline is awash with a kind of twisted innocence that is infinitely eerie.

Black buttons have ever since made me edgy.
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
I was attracted by the amazing artwork on the cover of this book, but was totally unprepared for the surprise inside. It is a pleasure to read out loud and was chosen as a bedtime story for our 8 year old child. OOps - very scary indeed, talking animals, rats singing cautionary tales, haughty cats, an impossibly long key, souls of dead children, the truth seen through a stone with a hole in it...... a girl trapped in a parallel world unable to leave until she rescues her parents.... The Other Mother and Father with large black buttons sewn on their eyelids, waiting to stitch up Coralines eyes..... I'm such a fan, can't you tell. Anyway, some clever person has bought the film rights and I can't wait. There's also a great website.. Look out for and click on the rats when they scurry over the page, they will sing their chilling song for you. Enjoy if you dare.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars He's done it again. 17 Oct 2002
Neil Gaiman is a fantastic writer and this latest book conjured from his warped imgination proves it beyond a shadow of a doubt.
The story is definetly written for children in mind but Gaiman manages to create an ambience so eerie and chilling that it will have any adult reading with the hairs on the back of their neck standing up.
You'll follow Coraline (Not Caroline!) into a world exactly like hers but counterfeit and with counterfeit parents. A world which wants to keep her there forever and always offering everything a child could wish for. But she's no fool and soon figures that there are things that are just too good to be true. Be it in this world or another.
The book is within the same genre as alice in wonderland but has many original ideas which will dare you to put the book down and not read it in one sitting. I was not up to this dare and finished it within one read. I am now currently reading it to my partner who is enjoying it almost as much as I did!
I'll be buying a copy for all the children and fantasy loving adults I know.
Highly recommended.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A stunning little novel! 28 July 2003
I have often thought that the closest surviving cousin to horror writing is children’s literature - and if I ever need to site an example of that then this book is almost perfect. And in spite of its nominally ‘children’s book’ sort of style it remains one of the finest true horror tales I have seen in a long time, with roots completely within the fractured modern type of writing of people like Ramsey Campbell or Clive Barker. In a sense it takes the old story of Alice Through the Looking Glass and follows it a good few more steps into the darkness. It tells of a young girl who finds herself going through a strange door in her house, through what is usually just a bricked up doorway, to find herself in a strange world, not a physical mirror but a psychological one. There she encounters her ‘other mother’ – a seriously terrifying character with big black buttons for eyes – who professes nothing but the greatest love for her – nothing but the desire to make her enjoy life . . .
So it seems. But it doesn’t take long for the vague uneasiness to develop into something quite extraordinary.
Coraline is a remarkable story of doorways and monsters and games played out in extraordinary surreal surroundings. A tale where the logic of dreams rules everything and where the most irrational things make complete sense. The fine thing about books like this – about this particular kind of dreamlike, irrational nightmare – is that they possess the power to lift you up a bit from all the banal moralisation and frustrations by confronting you with something truly timeless and timelessly significant.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bland 20 Oct 2013
To say anything bad about Neil Gaiman is to incur the wrath of the most committed of fans! I've read a few of his books but find them a bit hit-and-miss. Often, for me, the idea is much better than the actual execution; and Coraline is a case in point.

Not scary enough, not descriptive enough, it didn't tick any of my boxes.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars You'll never look at a button the same again!
I was given this by a friend and told it was worth a read. I must admit I’m not normally one for reading children/teen fiction but after having consumed Gaiman’s Neverwhere with a... Read more
Published 28 days ago by Jerico
2.0 out of 5 stars Fairly dull...
If you haven't watched the movie then do that instead. The movie is wonderful but the book is definitely not.
Published 29 days ago by Jondc
4.0 out of 5 stars Coraline
I started reading Coraline at school but we were only reading 2 chapters a week so I thought I would read it at home and I couldn't put the book down!
Published 1 month ago by penguin buddy
5.0 out of 5 stars Coroline
This is the most spectacular book I have ever read and possibly the scariest I would not highly recommend this book too children because but it defiantly lived up to my... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Caroline T.
5.0 out of 5 stars Reread
Neil Gammon never fails. I know it is presented as a young persons book, but it was still a satisfying read the second time around.Believable supernatural.
Published 1 month ago by Nnimue
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
It's even better than the film and it is very different from it too. I think you can never be too old for this book and you will want to read it over and over again. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kim Daschle
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
I gave this a 5 because it was very interesting and didn't take me very long. You should read this book!
Published 1 month ago by I love horses
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely book to read
Brought this for my daughter to read to help her with her homework and loved reading it myself.
And had to get the DVD too!
Published 1 month ago by Jennie Rowe
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
This book reminded me of how brave children are. I teach primary and I see such bravery every day. I can't wait to tell them about Coraline, they will love it, although I suspect... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Ann Marie Kelly
5.0 out of 5 stars Engrossed
I was obsessed with the film, it was my feeling poorly film. I was a bit dissappointed when I heard some of the differences between the film and book, however as I was reading it I... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Tim Leyland
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