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The Graveyard Book

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4.13  ·  Rating details ·  403,502 ratings  ·  29,264 reviews
Bod is an unusual boy who inhabits an unusual place-he's the only living resident of a graveyard. Raised from infancy by the ghosts, werewolves, and other cemetery denizens, Bod has learned the antiquated customs of his guardians' time as well as their timely ghostly teachings-like the ability to Fade. Can a boy raised by ghosts face the wonders and terrors of the worlds o ...more
Hardcover, 307 pages
Published September 30th 2008 by HarperCollins (first published 2008)
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Dawn Absolutely loved him. Bod is actually one of my favorite Gaiman protags. He's a departure from the hapless, wimpy slackers that usually characterize…moreAbsolutely loved him. Bod is actually one of my favorite Gaiman protags. He's a departure from the hapless, wimpy slackers that usually characterize his protagonists. Bod is tough, does what he needs to, and is utterly unapologetic about it while still being likable and sympathetic.(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Mommooshka As Gaiman said in his Newbery Medal acceptance speech for this book, he realized as he was writing the ending "I was now writing about being a parent,…moreAs Gaiman said in his Newbery Medal acceptance speech for this book, he realized as he was writing the ending "I was now writing about being a parent, and the fundamental most comical tragedy of parenthood: that if you do your job properly, if you, as a parent, raise your children well, they won't need you anymore. If you did it properly, they go away. And they have lives and they have families and they have futures."(less)

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Average rating 4.13  · 
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 ·  403,502 ratings  ·  29,264 reviews


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Patrick
Jun 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing

Recently, on a car trip with my little boy, I decided to try listening to an audiobook.

In the past this hasn't been a success. He loves to be read to in person, both picture books and chapter books. But he not a fan of listening to books in the car. At best he's indifferent, but usually he just asks me to turn them off.

Generally speaking, he'd prefer to listen to Macklemore's Thrift Shop, which he calls "The Sway Music."

But he's four now, with a vocabulary that's diverse to the point of being
...more
Jayson
(A-) 83% | Very Good
Notes: A bit too short, and the illustrations don’t really work. Still, it’s a fun, light and whimsical take on its macabre milieu.
Mark Lawrence
Dec 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this to Celyn but the 5* are from both of us. I think I probably enjoyed it more than she did in fact.

It's a fine book. I can see why it's done so well. The story is well structured, the brutal opening providing an orphan, a mystery, and an ongoing threat. Thereafter the book slowly cycles back around to its beginning and in the mean time raises our young Bod, equipping him with the skills to deal with his problem.

Bod's life in the graveyard is very interesting, wi
...more
Miranda Reads
Nov 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
It takes a graveyard to raise a child

Nobody Owens (yes, that's his name) becomes orphaned at an early age when an unknown "Jack" murders his entire family.

What's surprising is that Nobody doesn't even notice - the kid is too excited that the house door is open and toddles off for adventure.

He ends up at the local graveyard. The local ghosts see Jack's intentions and decide to grant Nobody the Protection of the Graveyard.

A childless ghost couple adopts the toddler and a vampire becomes his gu
...more
Betsy
Jul 01, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Betsy by: Monica Edinger
I’ve noticed that there’s been an increased interest in the macabre in children’s literature lately. Sometimes when I’ve had a glass or two of wine and I’m in a contemplative mood I try weaving together a postulation that ties the current love of violent movies into this rise in children’s literary darkness. Is the violence of the world today trickling down into our entertainment? Hogwash and poppycock and other words of scoff and denial, says sober I. But I’ve certainly seen a distinct rise in ...more
Nataliya
It takes a graveyard to raise a child. This is a summary of this magical, sweet and imaginative story for children, which (in a good tradition of the Brothers Grimm) started with a triple homicide.
“There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.”
Neil Gaiman does not waste time with unicorns and princesses and butterflies which are often considered acceptable for children. He kicks off his book with the brutal murders of a child's entire family, written in a chilling tone that made me quickly turn all the lights on in my be(in
...more
Ariel
Oct 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just don't think Neil Gaiman can write something I won't enjoy. His worlds are so rich and visceral, his characters so unique and loveable. I loved this story, loved Bod with all my heart, and was proud of him as he grew up. I listened to this audiobook, narrated by Neil Gaiman, and it was top notch. Can't wait for my next
Spencer Orey
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For having such a sinister beginning and heavy life-and-death themes (it's the Jungle Book set in a graveyard), this book is a real joy to read. The graveyard magic is fantastic and grows in fun ways throughout the story, and the ghosts and creatures that inhabit this world make for a delightful cast of characters.

I loved a ton of things as I read, but one that especially stuck out to me was how Bod grows older but the ghosts remain their same ages. So with each time jump, he interacts very dif
...more
Will Byrnes
Oct 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
When a family is murdered by a mysterious killer, one of the intended victims is missing, a young, diapered boy, who had wandered off just before the crime took place. But the killer needed to complete the job. Fortunately for the boy, he was taken in by the late residents of a nearby graveyard. And when the spirit of his newly deceased mother asks for their help, the residents agree to raise her son. He is given to the care of the Owens couple and named “Nobody,” Bod for short, as he looks like ...more
Lyn
Feb 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When first reading Neil Gaiman’s wonderfully dark but playful fantasy The Graveyard Book, I instantly discovered that I liked it a lot. When I realized that The Graveyard Book was also Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, but updated to be gothic and macabre, with a boy not raised by wolves but ghosts, I loved it.

Winner of the Hugo Award in 2009, this is a rival to Gaiman’s masterpiece American Gods. This is vintage Gaiman at his masterfully fantastic best, an heir to the Grandmaster throne of Ray Bradbury
...more
Valerie
Aug 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
This is how it usually goes with me and Neil Gaiman books:

Scene: at the library.
Picks up Stardust and reads back flap... thinks, "hey, this looks like a great book. What an interesting idea for a story..." When actually reading Stardust: bored.

A couple months later. At the library.
Picks up Neverwhere... thinks, "hmmm. This looks really interesting, but that's what I thought about Stardust. Well, maybe I'll give him one last chance." When actually reading Neverwhere: stupid last chances!!!

So I was a little hesitant to pick up The Gra/>Picks/>Picks
...more
emma
Ho-ly shit. You guys!

https://emmareadstoomuch.wordpress.co...

I just managed to get through a book - a whole freaking book - with no blatant sexism, racism, homophobia, girl-on-girl hate, instances of the beloved not like other girls trope, love triangles, flat characters, overused archetypes, that plotline where you discover your power and it’s consuming you, gag-worthy romance, weird writing quirks, overwrought emotion, social issues used t
...more
Fabian
Jul 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
The riproaring adventures of Huck Finn's wiser half-brother; Harry Potter's long lost second cousin. A Mowgli doppleganger, admittedly so.

When Tim Burton died*, the void was taken up, wholly, by Mr. Gaiman. When will "The Graveyard Book" become a film? Cannot wait to watch singin'/dancin' ghosts, not the usual rerecycled shit from some Disney classic. Hey, it worked like a charm with "Coraline"!

*career-wise, art-wise
Jason Koivu
Jan 23, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Jason by: Everyone...just fucking everyone
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
I've got a doctor's appointment scheduled for Monday. Maybe I'll ask what's wrong with me, I mean, why don't I love Neil Gaiman as much as everyone else?

After all the hype surrounding him, I finally gave in and started reading his books. Aside from his collection of short stories, Fragile Things, I haven't been as impressed as I expected to be.

The Graveyard Book in particular I found to be slow moving and depressing. Maybe that's inevitable being that most of the characters in it are dead. It's not that
...more
Julie
A friend of mine had an extra ticket to see Neil Gaiman's sold-out lecture in Denver last week, so we rode the bus downtown, walked a block or two, then turned a street corner, only to be startled by some 2,000 fervent fans wrapped around and around the building, shivering and salivating at the prospect of entering the doors.

I was in awe of their devotion, and I felt like an imposter, too. I'd never read anything of Neil's, other than an illustrated picture book for kids, and if thes
...more
Val ⚓️ Shameless Non-Snowflake ⚓️
4 Stars

My reading has been all over the place lately. I have been reading a lot of adult fantasy, YA fantasy, and just straight up middle grade books...and very little romance. For whatever reason, that is just what I have felt like reading.

This was a cute, if creepy, little book. It was for me what I expected The Little Prince to be, but alas, wasn't. I really liked Bod and all the characters of the graveyard, especially Silas. I also enjoyed Gaiman's writing style - which is a good thing, since
...more
Meredith
Oct 16, 2008 rated it liked it
**SPOILER ALERT**

This book was entirely mediocre. The plot was disjointed and very loosely woven throughout the story, and much of it didn't make any sense. Details (what few details there were) seemed to be added at the last minute to make later events in the story make sense. It's almost as if Gaiman wrote the middle first, then the beginning, and then the end. I think he had a million ideas floating around in his head and had no idea how to connect them all, so he made up some stu
...more
mark monday
Once there was a little girl who lived in a big house in a strange and wonderful city in the North. Her name: Dove Black*. An unusual name for an unusual girl. Her equally unusual mother took her away for the summer, across the sea. I came to that strange and wonderful city and stayed in that big house. In the house was a book. The Graveyard Book! I fell prey to an odd illness during my visit; while my companions made merry in the streets and taverns of that city, I recovered on the wide and sun ...more
JV (semi-hiatus)
This is my third Gaiman novel. It's a spectacular masterpiece that delightfully blends the macabre with the grave (no pun intended) and the whimsical creating a haunting, mesmerizing allegorical tale about the ephemeral joys of childhood, the gradual transition to adulthood, and the philosophical dichotomy of life and death.
"It is going to take more than just a couple of good-hearted souls to raise this child. It will take a graveyard."
The Graveyard (a nature reserve), Old Town, England — Three ruthless murderdeath.
...more
Celeste
Jul 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-books
You can find this review and more on Booknest.

I’ve now officially read every novel and short story and piece of nonfiction that Gaiman has published, outside of his graphic novels. And this particular book was probably one of my favorites. It was an adorable adventure, a dark version of The Jungle Book if Mowgli had been raised by ghosts instead of jungle predators.

Gaiman writes wonderful children’s books. Sometimes kids want to read something that scares them just a little, and Gaiman does that ve
...more
Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
I read the first chapter with a massive grin on my face because it was so obvious where this book was going, and it sounded marvellous.

“I do. For good or for ill- and I firmly believe that it is for the good – Mrs Owens and her husband have taken this child under their protection. It is going to take more than just a couple of good-hearted souls to raise this child. “It will”, said Silas, “take a graveyard”

d</b></i></span>
  <span id=I read the first chapter with a massive grin on my face because it was so obvious where this book was going, and it sounded marvellous.

“I do. For good or for ill- and I firmly believe that it is for the good – Mrs Owens and her husband have taken this child under their protection. It is going to take more than just a couple of good-hearted souls to raise this child. “It will”, said Silas, “take a graveyard”

description

Nobody’s, or Bod to his friends, has just had his parents murdered by “The Man named Jack.” Bod got away by wondering into the graveyard in an infantile escape from his cot. It saved his life. The local graveyard residents name him Nobody because, by their logic he is nobody. The residents, the ghosts, decide to raise him as one of their own; the only problem is he isn’t dead!

They try to teach him things like disappearing and repapering, and other ghostly tricks. This doesn’t come easy to him but, somehow he manages to grasp some of the basics, which include remaining hidden in crowds and how detach himself from other people. This results in Bid becoming a bookish like recluse; his only friends are the dead. This sounds worse than it is when considering some of the exciting characters than infest the Graveyard. Characters like a druidic warrior that protects the barrow next to the yard and a long dead Roman called Silas.

Silas serves as Bod’s guardian, his teacher and his friend. The ghost protects him form the dangers of the human world, which is quite ironic really, the chief danger being “The Man named Jack” who still wants Bod dead.

This really is one of those rare books that you can tell from the first few pages, no words, that it is going to be something great. I loved this book; I don’t think I stopped smiling when I read it. The story really appealed to my inner child like so few books have done before. I think it’s time to buy more of Neil Gaiman’s books!
...more
Hamad
Oct 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
This ReviewBlog 📖 Twitter 🐦 Instagram 📷

“If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained.”


★ This fortunately was one of Gaiman’s books that worked for me. I had my copy for a while but I wanted to read it in October since it is the spooky month and I finally did it. I would not consider it a horror story as I saw some readers shelf it but it was still a good choice for this month!

★ The writing was very digestible and easy to follow and I think this is part of the re/>
...more
Maggie Stiefvater
I have just this moment closed the cover of THE GRAVEYARD BOOK, after loitering rather longingly over the acknowledgments and possibly the back jacket flap as well.

I don't think I can manage a proper synopsis or review of this book -- about an orphaned boy who is raised by a graveyard of ghosts -- so I think I will just have to say that I love it very, very deeply. For so long I refused to pick it up because I thought it sounded quaint and possibly twee, but it was neither. It pushed
...more
Debra
Dec 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I ever read by Neil Gaiman and it is my favorite of his books. I saw this book while volunteering in the library at my son's elementary school. I decided why not? It was a book for kids or so I thought...after all it had won the American Newbery Medal and the HUGO award for children's fantasy book. I checked it out using my son's library card thinking I would read it to him at bedtime. It proved to be too dark for him but I was hooked. Most of the book takes place in a gra ...more
Lisa
I can't possibly tell if I'd love this book as much if I hadn't read it under such special circumstances, so this review will serve as proof that context matters!

It all started a couple of years ago in August, one of the first days of school. I had a literature lesson with Grade 8, and the topic was:

"What shall we read together?"

I made several suggestions, and they turned them down. They made several others, and I turned them down, mostly because I didn't think the books
...more
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
Even as a child, I’ve always been obsessed with ghosts and cemeteries, and despite the fact that I would have been terrified, I remember having this idea that it would have been so cool(!) to just move my whole family to a graveyard and live surrounded by spirits and ghouls and whatever other sort of lovely non-living things one might find therein. Since that obviously never quite worked out for me as a child, it only makes sense that I would eventually pick up The Graveyard Book to live vicariously throug ...more
PorshaJo
May 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Rating a 4.5

What is a Halloween read without a story by Neil Gaiman. I think I have made it known quite a few times of my love for Mr. Gaiman. This is a story I read a number of years ago, I believe when it first came out. Before I started writing reviews on GR. But I found the story so enchanting that I knew I would read it again some day. But this time, I *listened* to the audio read by Neil Gaiman himself.

The story is of Nobody "Bod" Owens who grows up in a graveyard after his pa
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Graveyard Book, Neil Gaiman
The Graveyard Book is a children's fantasy novel by the English author Neil Gaiman, simultaneously published in Britain and America during 2008. The Graveyard Book traces the story of the boy Nobody "Bod" Owens who is adopted and raised by the supernatural occupants of a graveyard after his family is brutally murdered. The story begins as Jack (usually referred to in the novel as "the man Jack") murders most of the members of a family (later revealed to be th
...more
karen
Aug 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
and thats me finishing my last book for this class. and i managed to read it the same day i watched coraline, so im a little gaimaned out right now. this book was enjoyable - it is a little episodic-with-overarching- storyline number about a child living in a graveyard with the dead after a man slaughters his family with a knife. typical newbery fare. there are a few very memorable scenes, and i think i developed a crush on silas, but i have too much of a headache now for anything else. maybe mo ...more
Duane
2009 Newbery Medal winner.

I'm probably not the only person that would like to know the next chapter in Bod's life. Even Neil Gaiman may not know, but then again, maybe he does. But that's the nature of books, they end, and many times we are not satisfied, not completely. What a wonderful story, what imagination Gaiman has. Five stars and deserving. Children's literature at it's finest.
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