- Hardcover: 192 pages
- Publisher: William Morrow & Company (18 Jun. 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062255657
- ISBN-13: 978-0062255655
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.9 x 21 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1,206 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,686,252 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Ocean at the End of the Lane Hardcover – Deckle Edge, 18 Jun 2013
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'Gaiman is, simply put, a treasure-house of story, and we are lucky to have him' (Stephen King)
'Gaiman has a rich imagination...and an ability to tackle large themes' (Philip Pullman) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling writer Neil Gaiman, comes a novel of memory, magic and survival, about the power of stories and the darkness inside each of us. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
It is a 'plot driven' novel where plenty happens and it is often exciting and hard to put down. But there is a strong emotional undercurrent, and many genuinely poignant moments. It's very well balanced and manages to tug at your heart strings without actually appearing to do so, as you're so caught up in the drama.
Even readers who don't usually go for 'fantasy' books would likely enjoy this - it's accessibly written, and its themes of loss of innocence and taking on responsibility are universal. It's also a thumping good yarn that is hard to put down. The length is short - under 150 pages, and the pacing perfect. Gaiman is good at building up suspense and the middle section in particular had me jumping at shadows. There's a creepy, unsettling feeling that is created, and the ending is moving.
Although it's a book about a child and childhood, it wouldn't be suitable for young children. However I think teenagers from around 12 upwards would appreciate it and enjoy it. There are some mild sexual references and it's a bit scary, but no more so than many other books for this age group.Read more ›
What Gaiman has done here is to take memories, the innocence of childhood, the fears of that age, and fairy tales, blended them together and distilled the essence into this exquisite tale. The Hempstocks are worldly and wise, and care deeply about all the things around them. The events that take place and the dark forces that swirl around this Sussex village are some of main fears that a child can confront, and yet the writing is compelling and deft.
You never get to know the name of the main character as I think Gaiman wants you to think that it is him, or possibly even you, experiencing these events. The way that the main character remembers means that reality, the dreams and nightmares, are all intertwined and you are not sure what is really happening, or is in his mind.
It is a melancholy tale, and the ending is quite powerful. Really enjoyed this and can highly recommend it.
Although this theme of reality spilling into the unknown (or vice versa) is one of Gaiman’s familiar formulas, there is something so very different and unexpected about this latest tale. We enter into the reveries of a middle-aged man who has returned to his hometown for a funeral. The childhood recollections, told in a very believeable first-person narrative, seem wholly commonplace and plausible. The exact sort of memories that Gaiman himself might have; and indeed he has revealed that he drew heavily upon personal experiences when writing this book. Somewhere along the way, however, the reader is almost imperceptibly drawn into a world of supernatural wonderment. There are dangers so completely evil that the seven year old protagonist should be hiding away beneath the blankets; yet children are always more accepting of the unexplainable, and so he finds himself caught in a thick web of mystical wickedness. By his side, however, is a girl as wholesome as the fresh milk she serves him from her farm; but also as brave as any mythic hero and as sagely as the dawn of time.
It is a journey that you will not forget easily. It is childhood lost and fairytales rekindled. It is one of a kind, and only Gaiman could have crafted such a complexly enchanting tale.
It's a very short and peculiar book, and much is hinted at but unanswered. It feels almost dream-like in some ways, and like most dreams you wake without there being any resolution or logic to what you've experienced, and for me the book was similarly disjointed. By the end I still had no idea what it was all really about, and although the writing was good I can't really say I enjoyed it very much. Maybe I missed something, but then again I confess I'm not a fan of fantasy fiction - the genre this inhabits more than any other.
Lots of people clearly adore this book, but I'm afraid it wasn't my cup of tea at all.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Totally absorbing and fantastical, if I could write this is what I would have written. I have never read anything like it and can't recommend it enoughPublished 4 days ago by B Ewen
Walks a fine line between good storytelling with wonderful imagery and a boring bloke describing his dream. Just about stays on the right side. That's my last Gaiman though. Read morePublished 10 days ago by Mr. Richard Marris
I may be getting old but this is a beautiful book. It is not the one-off classic (or not as we now know) of a semi-autobiographical author like Harper Lee whose "To Kill a... Read morePublished 14 days ago by DrEvil
Thoroughly enjoyed this book from beginning to end, an excellent read.Published 18 days ago by Amazon Customer