The Graveyard Book

The Graveyard Book
By: Neil Gaiman

Challenge:  R.I.P. VII

Published:  2008

# of pages:  320

"There were three of them there, then, and Amabella was introducing Bod and he was shaking hands and saying, 'Charmed, I am sure,' because he could greet people politely over nine hundred years of changing manners."

"Really, he thought, if you couldn't trust a poet to offer sensible advice, who could you trust?"

Official description: After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.
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. 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.
My opinion:  It was weird going to the children's section of the library to find this book.  I know that children's literature includes kids in middle school, but it just seems weird that this is in the same genre as picture books.

When it comes to ages, I would let my 5th grader and older read this book.  It starts out with the murder of a boy's family, which is pretty disturbing.  My heart ached thinking of the toddler boy wandering off on his own, even though it meant he was saved. I couldn't help but think of my own little boys wandering out of the house at night.

The book isn't all scary and intense though.  Most of it is pretty lighthearted, actually.  Bod is able to interact with all sorts of "people" from all sorts of time periods.  He learns to speak to adults and learn the truth about historic events from first hand sources.  I love how he was raised by everyone in a safe community, even if they were all ghosts.

The end of the book is definitely bittersweet.  Bod has so many adventures and meets so many people throughout the different chapters of the book.  The novel is a little disjointed at times, since some chapters almost seem like individual stories in themselves, but most of it ties together at the end.

I recommend this to children, young adults, and adults.  It isn't scary, but the beginning is a little and there are intense parts.  It is supernatural, but it isn't over the top or really serious.

Why I gave this book 4/5 stars:  Very unique story; interesting and likable characters; good "growing up" story about a boy who makes mistakes, but learns from them.

Other reviews:
Literary Musings
things mean a lot
Bold. Blue. Adventure.
Bookfoolery and Babble
You Can Never Have Too Many Books

Have you reviewed this? Let me know and I'd be happy to post yours as well.



It's that time of year again!  I've been looking forward to R.I.P. for months, but as always, was late signing up.

The event officially starts September 1st and runs through October 31st.

Here's what it's all about:

The purpose of R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril VII is to enjoy books and movies/television that could be classified (by you) as:
Dark Fantasy.
Or anything sufficiently moody that shares a kinship with the above.

I'll be participating in Peril the First and reading 4 books this year.

1.  Jamaica Inn  by: Daphne du Maurier
2.  The Red Tree  by: Caitlin Kiernan
3.  The Graveyard Book  by: Neil Gaiman
4.  We Have Always Lived in the Castle  by: Shirley Jackson

Are you participating as well?  I'd love to hear what you're reading and/or watching!

Previous R.I.P. challenges:

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The Winter Sea

The Winter Sea
By: Susanna Kearsley
Published: 2008
# of pages: 527

Official description:  It is 2008 and Carrie McClelland can't hit the right note for her next novel, but an unplanned detour in Scotland, and a stop at the castle that inspired Count Dracula, sets her on a different path; a path that took her back in time exactly 300 years, to that same castle, and to a rebellion doomed to failure. Alternating between the contemporary setting and the past, The Winter Sea takes us at every turn into little known worlds; historical footnotes writ large, a history of Scotland and the Jacobite rebellion of 1708 and the possibility of genetic memory. Historical fiction at its best and Susanna Kearsley at hers, The Winter Sea evokes the writing of Thomas Raddall, Daphne Du Maurier, and Mary Stewart.
My opinion:  Wow! I didn't think I'd like this book much when I started it, but I ended up loving it. It's 2 books in one, and I love the way the author wove them together. I especially enjoyed the character of Sophia and the historical story line.  The time period of the historical story was neat.  I haven't read many books set in historic Scotland and although I've heard things about the Stewarts and the Union, I didn't know much, so this book was very educational for me.

Why I gave this book 5/5 stars: Well written, enjoyable characters, "what happens next?", I want to go to Scotland and see Slains Castle!

Other reviews:
Bookfoolery and Babble

Have you reviewed this? Let me know and I'd be happy to post yours as well.

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