The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

There is a house that rests nearby an ancient graveyard. One night the man named Jack enters the house and murders the family living there, all except for a little baby that unintentionally escaped to the graves. Too young to know his own name, the ghosts of the graveyard adopt him and christen him ‘Nobody Owens’ or Bod for short. Shielding the baby from danger, the ghosts become his family, his friends and teachers.

With a guardian to provide food and teachings of the world, Bod grows from a baby to a boy then teenager. But the graveyard isn’t what it seems and there are dangers that Bod can’t understand that coexist with the friendly haunts. As the years pass and Bod grow restless for knowledge about himself and the world, he’ll have to rely on his wit and ghostly friends as the man named Jack is still on the hunt for him…

Beautifully illustrated and decorated with in depth characters, alive or not, Gaiman is the master at creating environments that readers just accept. The ghosts are hauntingly intriguing and the setting of the graveyard with its secret nooks and creatures is beautifully crafted to lure the reader in.

Although a bit long for my taste, The Graveyard Book is still a wonderful adventure to behold. Gaiman is a talented writer and nothing is lost throughout this book. What Gaiman excels at is providing settings and characters that don’t need a full explanation, but are better left up to the discretion of the reader. The beginning is shrouded in mysterious, the middle full of complex lessons and adventures, but the ending is exciting and before you know it the book has ended. Like Stephen King, Gaiman is able to create constantly new material each book, nothing repeats and it’s never boring. The Graveyard Book is a great YA novel for those looking for something with a bit more depth and mystery.

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