The Graveyard Book Review

The Graveyard Book
Rating: 5/5
Buy or Borrow: Buy
Source: Copy via Waterstones

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a perfectly normal boy. Apart from the fact that he lives in a graveyard and educated by ghosts, and his guardian belongs to neither the world of the living nor the dead.

There are dangers and adventures for Bod in the graveyard: the strange and terrible menace of the Sleer; a gravestone entrance to a desert that leads to the city of ghouls; friendship with a witch; and so much more.

But it is in the land of the living that the real dangers lurk, for it is there that the man Jack lives and he has already killed Bod's family. 

Before I start, I just want to say that this has got to be one of the most unique stories I've not only read this year, but ever. The story-line is completely bonkers but it's written so beautifully, that you start to wonder if this could actually happen. I think stories that make you want to believe something that seems impossible, are the most powerful.

I'd actually never heard of Neil Gaiman until a few months ago when I bought his new book, Norse Mythology, for my husband. It was then that I found myself reading his books and watching American Gods. The Graveyard Book was the first book I read of his and I can see now why he is as successful as he is. 

The story focuses on Nobody Owens (Bod). His family was murdered when he was a toddler by the mysterious "Jack"; we find out more about him and who he works for as the story unfolds. It was whilst his family was being murdered that little Bod snuck out of his family home and wound up at a graveyard. 

The ghosts in the graveyard decide to take Bod in as one of their own and pretty soon, Bod does turn into one of them...well, almost. He can do exactly what all the ghosts in the graveyard can do, but he's alive. His guardian (my favourite character in the book) Silas is neither alive, nor dead; he is caught in limbo and we discover that this isn't a great place to be, but he is responsible for everything that Bod does. 

Bod isn't allowed to leave the graveyard, but as he gets older and has some interaction with the living world, his curiosity grows stronger and he isn't as easy to contain as he once was. He explores the graveyard in great depth, coming into some quite sticky situations. 

I think my favourite is the ghouls. They trick him into thinking they're going somewhere magnificent, with all he could ever want in life and before he knows it, he's fighting for his life in the desert, with half-crazed ghouls. 

The book is really quite funny and is filled with the most beautiful illustrations to coincide with each chapter. Then it gets serious and Bod sets out to discover who's killed his parents, no matter what gets in his way...

I absolutely adored this book and I feel this is only the start of my love for Neil Gaiman. I finished it in a day (as always with books I love) and it really is an amazing book. If you've never read it, make sure you check it out because it's everything a good horror book should be!

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