Customer Reviews


259 Reviews
5 star:
 (188)
4 star:
 (55)
3 star:
 (11)
2 star:
 (5)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


207 of 214 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It takes a graveyard
Imagine Rudyard Kipling's "Jungle Book"... but replace the animals with ghosts, ghouls, werewolves and other such supernatural creatures.

Such is the concept of "The Graveyard Book," which cleverly turns Kipling's classic story into an exquisitely-written, darkly witty fantasy. While it starts as the assorted supernatural adventures of a young boy raised by...
Published on 10 Oct 2008 by E. A Solinas

versus
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Life during death.
A killer is loose he has claimed three victims from one family but one escapes. He lives to fight another day. But there is something unique about this escapee.

He is a baby.

He does not know his name.

He finds shelter in a graveyard.

The ghosts who live in the graveyard, claim him and name him as No'bod'y.

Bod...
Published on 5 Feb 2012 by Jo D'Arcy


‹ Previous | 1 226 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

207 of 214 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It takes a graveyard, 10 Oct 2008
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
Imagine Rudyard Kipling's "Jungle Book"... but replace the animals with ghosts, ghouls, werewolves and other such supernatural creatures.

Such is the concept of "The Graveyard Book," which cleverly turns Kipling's classic story into an exquisitely-written, darkly witty fantasy. While it starts as the assorted supernatural adventures of a young boy raised by ghosts, the story slowly evolves into a beautifully ghastly confrontation between Nobody Owens and the people who want to do him harm.

"There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife." A man named Jack kills an innocent family at night -- except for a baby boy, who toddles out to the graveyard.

With the approval of the Lady on the Grey, the Owens ghosts adopt the boy, whom they name Nobody (or "Bod" for short), and the mysterious not-dead-or-alive Silas is appointed his guardian. Bod slowly grows up, but his upbringing is hardly ordinary -- he is taught by a Hound of God, wanders into the horrific realm of Ghulheim, watches a danse macabre, and befriends a witch's spirit from the Potter's Field.

But the man named Jack is still out there, and for some reason he (and the organization he works for) still wants to kill Bod. And though Silas and the ghosts are trying to keep him safe, Bod is becoming curious about the world of living humans -- and about the man who murdered his family. And when they come for him, he'll be ready.

The world of Neil Gaiman is never a safe place -- it's always painted in shadows and shades of grey, and something horrible may be lurking around the corner. And the world of "The Graveyard Book" is no exception to this -- it's filled with strange supernatural creatures, hellish red cities with decayed moons overhead, and midnight parades where ghosts dance with the living.

The world of the graveyard is an intriguing one -- moonlight, crumbly headstones, a little stone church, and a creepy barrow where the Sleer lurk. From a lesser author this would be kind of boring, but Gaiman's beautiful prose brings it to life ("There was a silent implosion, a flutter of velvet darkness, and Silas was gone").

And Gaiman explores Bod's childhood with dark humour ("Can you imagine how fine a drink the black ichor that collects in leaden coffins can be?") and adventure. But the tone changes as Bod grows older, especially with the creepily professional Jack and his cohorts slowly closing in on him. It's a coming-of-age tale, and a bittersweet, sometimes terrifying one.

Bod himself is a lovable kid, who slowly explores first the world of the graveyard and then the world of the living. He's both ruthless and kind, sweet and strong. The mysterious Silas -- whose true nature is only revealed late in the book -- serves as a kindly but stern mentor, who pretty clearly loves young Bod like a father.

And there's a pretty wide supporting cast -- Bod's childhood friend Scarlett is rather bratty, but the ghosts make up for that. The snappy, witty witch Eliza, the kindly Owenses, Mother Slaughter, the fussy Mr. Pennyworth, and the schoolteacherish substitute guardian Miss Lupescu all round out the cast. And with only a few lines, Gaiman makes them seem practically real.

"The Graveyard Book" is a beautifully written, bittersweet coming-of-age tale with some moments of pure creepiness. A magnificent fantasy story, which is not to be missed.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


63 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Raised *by* the dead? That doesn't sound right..., 20 Oct 2008
By 
R. Hill "Rikk Hill" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
What one word best describes this tale of an infant whose whole family are murdered, and who toddles to the safety of a local graveyard, where he's raised and educated by the resident dead? That word, surprisingly, would be "charming".

And it is, in every sense of the word. It's eloquent without being condescending, comforting without being soft, sharp without being bitter, and it captivates your attention throughout its entirety, leaving you perfectly satisfied by the end.

The cast of characters are written to perfection. The dead maintain an eerie timelessness, whilst the other supernatural creatures are subtle yet distinct, ("Silas ate only one food, and it was not bananas"); the villains pull off the trick of being both evil *and* credible; the living have a refreshing mundane quality, and Bod the protagonist is left with the uneasy struggle of being neither fish nor fowl (nor dead).

A delight to read and a joy to think about.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant book, defintely one of my favourites of the year!, 14 Jan 2009
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
I'd never read anything by Neil Gaiman before; "Not my thing", I'd decided. Then I watched the film adaptation of Startdust and thought maybe I'd give it a try after all. But I never did. And then all the publicity for The Graveyard Book started appearing ... and talk about judging a book by its cover. As a school librarian I should be ashamed to admit it but I decided to read the book purely because of the magnificent cover by Chris Riddell! I probably wouldn't have bothered if only the David McKean cover had been available. And what a mistake that would have been! Because WOW, what a book!
Bod is only a toddler when his whole family is murdered by the Man Jack; narrowly escaping, he takes refuge in a nearby graveyard. After many discussions, the ghostly inhabitants decide to look after him and he is adopted by Mr and Mrs Owens. Under the watchful eye of his guardian Silas, Bod grows up as a living boy in a dead man's world, with all the abilities of a ghost. But the Man Jack cannot rest until he has finished the job and is still on the lookout for Bod.
This is a fantastic fantasy book and a great coming-of-age book. There is lots of action, plenty of twists (some of them I did not see coming!) and enough gory creatures to keep fans of this genre entertained. But most of all, it is an amazing love story. Gaiman writes so well you forget that Bod's parents are in fact ghosts and his guardian a vampire; what you take away from this story is the sheer feeling of devotion for a child (the last chapter was heart-breaking for me but I think that's just because I am a mum and the thought of "letting go" of your child is quite hard!).
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, 19 Jun 2009
By 
Donald Tosh (Coggeshall, Nr Colchester, Essex. UK) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
Deservedly this book won the Newbery Medal. It is a remarkably unsentimental, wonderful,gently humorous tale of Nobody. The Baby who crawled into and was brought up in The Graveyard. To tell more of the story than that would spoil the magical effect of Gaiman's skill in leading you down a path which has you believing seven impossible things before elevenses.

To say I was entranced by this book is to put it in banal terms. I have now told at least forty people that until they read Gaiman's latest work, they will not realise that English writing is not only well, not only thriving, but reaching heights that the most optimistic would hardly credit.

This is story telling at it's highest level. I suggested to one of my grandsons (aged 11) that he might like to read this book. Unlike me he is not a great reader though he usually has a book by his bed. He shrugged but took it. Two days later he came to me with a huge grin on his face. "It's cool, Dadoo." he said " It's just...magic"

I don't think I can improve on that.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good, light hearted, escapism book., 27 Dec 2008
By 
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
I've just finished reading this and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Like I said in the title it was easy to read, funny in places and a good, light-hearted, escapism book. I would recommend it to anyone.

The lack of a 5th star only comes from the fact that I wish Neil would have gone into a bit for detail about the characters Silas and Miss Lupescu. I found myself left wanting for a bit more involvement from these two characters. I also got a tad frustrated by the haziness of what went on between them and the Jacks.

Other than that, I loved it and would defiantly read it again! I would also recommend listening to the audio-book. Neil himself narrates it and he does it extremely well; very atmospheric, broody and extremely enjoyable.

I hope you find this helpful (it's my 1st book review...)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Ghoulish Delight for Both Adults and Kiddies, 25 Oct 2008
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
Gaiman is a master story-teller, there is no doubt about that, but it's very hard to think of him as a children's story-book writer (and yes I know he has written other children's books before, but they always seemed...not quite right). However, after reading through this novel of his one can clearly see that he has the skills necessary to delight and educate the young ones without dulling it down too much or losing the young ones on the way.

The story can be considered to be an homage to Kipling's "Jungle Book" with excellent references being made to Kipling's story that are easily recognizable. The hero of the tale, Nobody Owens, is endearing, while at the same time not a weak character. Except for the fact that he was raised by ghots of the graveyard, he is an entirely believable character, which makes the novel even more enjoyable.

Fans of Gaiman will not be disappointed by this novel, those new to him will definitely enjoy it, and those who are looking for a good book to read to a child will also be well served by this.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


71 of 78 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An evocative, touching, masterful book..., 11 Oct 2008
By 
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
Brilliant - sinister, lyrical and poignant all at the same time. Like 'The Jungle Book', it's a great evocation of growing up as an outsider, and the world is vivid and perfectly imagined; and, like 'The Jungle Book', the narrative voice is faultless. But it has more narrative tension than 'The Jungle Book', and a grimmer edge - the gothic elements (ghosts, werewolves, vampires) are picturesque without being cliched, and occasionally funny, but at the heart of the book there's a real engagement with fear, time, and loss. There were a couple of moments towards the end where I thought the structure was weaker, but that's just a quibble - on the whole I thought this was wonderful: an intelligent, elegant, and - in spite of the pervading sense of graveyard cold - warm book. And Chris Riddell's illustrations are beautiful - ethereal-looking line drawings that are witty and unsettling. I haven't seen the other edition but I can't imagine Riddell's drawings being bettered.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Life during death., 5 Feb 2012
By 
Jo D'Arcy (Portsmouth, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A killer is loose he has claimed three victims from one family but one escapes. He lives to fight another day. But there is something unique about this escapee.

He is a baby.

He does not know his name.

He finds shelter in a graveyard.

The ghosts who live in the graveyard, claim him and name him as No'bod'y.

Bod becomes one of them whilst still alive. He has a guardian, Silas and parents Mr and Mrs Owens, teachers throughout the cemetery who educate him on all scholarly and ghostly matters.

But the man who killed his REAL family still needs to complete his mission and that is to kill the one who got away. Can Bod survive to live another day or will the ghostly world in which he inhabits finally shut him out forever?

This fantasy book is predominantly aimed at children aged 9 - 12 and I think perhaps less advanced readers would struggle with it, vocabulary wise but would certainly enjoy the pace of the story. There are parts of the book where the plot was certainly lost on me and it had very resonant elements of the Harry Potter series, which could be a double edged sword. Youngsters might find it good to progress to such a fantasy book as this whilst others might find it is a disappoint without much reasoned explanation for why Bod's family are killed.

The latter being what I found as I thought at one point I had missed a huge chunk of the book out as to why Bod needed to be killed. However I think perhaps with adult eyes we look for more reasoned explanations whilst as children we would simply go with the flow.

Each chapter is a story within itself and they are all page turners and it was an enjoyable read with the right amount of fantasy, reality and enough creepiness without feeling too scared to read on. A book for all to enjoy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ideal for those new to Neil Gaiman, 19 Jun 2009
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Hardcover)
As someone new to Neil Gaiman, I wasn't sure what to expect - but it was very pleasant surprise. Both touching and really quite dark and sinister at times, I particularly liked the relationship between Silas and Bod. The book successfully portrayed a cemetery as a safe and welcoming place and you were never quite sure what was going to happen next. Highly recommended.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Book I have Ever Read!, 2 July 2010
This review is from: The Graveyard Book (Paperback)
I read this book as part as the carnegie short list group at my school. My teacher said i should read this book becasuse anohter girl in the group had read it too and said it was amazing. I therefore thought i would give it a go and see what happens. With in a week I had read 5 chapters (the chapters are quite long,) and I was persuading everyone and everyone to read it, as soon as possible. It took me 2 weeks to read it and i couldn't put it down, but whats more i loved it so much that I read it twice! Last week my teacher read it and agreed.

I would recomend this book to anyone who likes strange, spooky, and at times miss leading books. At the begging of the book i was really confused but by the second i understood every thing, at least thats what I thought. By the 4th chaptcher, I thought I knew what had and was happening to the not quite there 'Bod', but I don't think i could of been more wrong! It's an easy read, well written, described well, and the story is described even more by the pictures at the begging of each chapter. A VERY GOOD BOOK!

'The Graveyard Book' Won the 2010 Carnegie Book Awards, and My Teacher, Parents, Friends and I all agree that it really deserved to win! I know describe this book as "THE BEST BOOK I HAVE EVER READ, AND PROBABLY EVER WILL!" Please read this book and persuade other people to read it too!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 226 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Graveyard Book
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (Paperback - 5 Oct 2009)
5.99
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews