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Sunday, June 07, 2009

Review: The Graveyard Book

I somehow never got to the Graveyard Book last year. It wasn't just because I was in Germany (I had a Kindle), it was that for $9.99, the book just didn't seem to have that much reading material, so I put it off until I had access to the library copy.

Gaiman's novels, I find, are a mixed bag. There's Stardust, which is a delightful story told really well (make sure you get the correct edition to get the delightful Charles Vess illustrations, which tell at least half the story), and then there's lackluster novels like American Gods, which left me cold. (I did find Anansi Boys to be fun, however) By contrast, almost all of Gaiman's comic books are worth reading.

The Graveyard Book is about a boy who survives a grisly killing of his family and is raised in a Graveyard by ghosts. It pays homage to Kipling's The Jungle Book, and there's definitely some form of patterning after that effort. Unfortunately, as stories go, it's not all that interesting --- I did not feel any sense of wonder, just a bunch of one contrieved situations after another. By the time I was finished, I was just glad to be done with the novel.

Not recommended. Pick up The Sandman instead.

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