The Graveyard Book Hardcover – 20 Oct 2008
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From the Back Cover
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. . . .
Beloved master storyteller Neil Gaiman returns with a luminous new novel for the audience that embraced his New York Times bestselling modern classic Coraline. Magical, terrifying, and filled with breathtaking adventures, the graveyard book is sure to enthrall readers of all ages." --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
`Beautifully judged, fluid prose' -- Literary Review
`Both twisted coming-of-age novel and riff on established folklore, it comes with my highest recommendation' -- Literary Review
`Chris Riddell embellishes the tale with elegant illustrations, some of which (four threatening villains, for example) communicate as much as the text'
-- The Sunday Times
`It is wise and exciting'
-- Sunday Herald (Glasgow)
`Meet Neil Gaiman ... the haunting writer adored by kids, adults - and Hollywood'
-- The Times
`One of the joys of reading Gaiman is how he subverts our expectations of magic, horror, fantasy and the mundane'
-- The Times
`The Jungle Book meets Philip Pullman in a graveyard. A new kidult classic' -- Metro
`The book is at once exciting, funny and touching and the illustrations by Chris Riddell perfectly enhance the text' -- 3SIXTY Magazine
`The highly skilled craftsmanship of Neil Gaiman's expertly joined plotting is constantly fascinating. With The Graveyard Book he appears to have exceeded even his own exacting standards, seeming to revel in creating the improbable and layering on impossible convolutions. The impossible he deals with through mind-twistingly clever links and attention to the most minute of details, the improbable becomes totally convincing through the sheer brilliance of the writing' -- The School Librarian
`This brief, dark, savoury adventure deserves to become a modern classic of children's writing' -- Independent on Sunday
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Top Customer Reviews
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.Read more ›
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!).
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.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A good little story about a living boy who is raised by a graveyard full of ghosts. The explanation for the murder of the family was a bit meh. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
Wonderful! Don't like being forced to write a huge review sometimes just a word is enough to convey the sentiment...Published 7 days ago by Rhiannon
In The Graveyard Book, Nobody Owens (also known as Bod) is saved from murder by Ghosts. As a toddler, Bod, crawls out of his cot and walks up the hill to The Graveyard in the dead... Read morePublished 9 days ago by Antony Simpson
I enjoy Gaiman's imagination and humour along with this writing style.
This does not disappoint and left me feeling sad but optimistic
Got this on Kindle as a story to read to my 9 year old son at bed time. Initially he was creeped out by the first chapter, but in a good way. Read morePublished 11 days ago by Andrew Gibson
Love this writer. For some reason I had trouble getting into this book last year, but I'm so glad I gave it another go. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Myawoman
There is an escape into the world of the dead, for the child from his murderer. It could turn out to be so morbid, given the location, but actually is an imaginative and charming... Read morePublished 1 month ago by RinkyDinky