Tuesday, 13 January 2009


Last night I sat down on the couch, covered myself with a blanket and read Neil Gaiman's Coraline from cover to cover while sipping a cup of mint tea. It's my second Gaiman book but I got it for Christmas and was in a rather fantastical mood and seeing as my Twilight sequels haven't arrived yet I decided to give this a go. And I'm very pleased I did.

Last year I read Neverwhere which introduced me to Gaiman's deceptively simple style in which he creates spellbinding worlds and truly engaging characters. He is very original when it comes to making alternate universes but storywise I found him lacking. I've never been a fan of fantastic fiction but for some reason I am intrigued, especially seeing as every review I've read of his books was full of praise.

I guess Stardust is probably the most popular book that he has written seeing it was also turned into a fun and freaky movie a few years ago starring Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert DeNiro and Claire Danes. Those who are familiar with his work will probably love him for his epic comic, The Sandman.

So last night I decided to give Coraline a go. It's a children's book but not quite aimed at children if you get my drift seeing as it does get rather scary at times. The book tells the truly captivating tale of Coraline, a young girl who has just moved with her parents into a big old house where she finds a rather peculiar door. Behind it is a portal to... her own house. Yet when she enters it, nothing is as she remembers. Cats talk, rats are spies , the worlds ends at the back of the garden and her parents don't have eyes but buttons. So far so good, your typical fantastic children's fair but then it starts to get really freaky and oh so scary... I have to say I really loved the story. It wasn't what I was expecting seeing as I was a bit hesitant after Neverwhere but it was so entertaining and fascinating that I could not put it down. I'm definitely going to give Gaiman the benefit of the doubt. I'm actually dying to read his latest, The Graveyard Book...

I also can't wait to see the movie which sadly opens in November (for those who live in Belgium at least). It's a 3D stop motion picture directed by Henry Selick who also brought us The Nightmare Before Christmas which already says a lot about Coraline's look and content.

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