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Coraline
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message 1: by Zeljka (last edited Mar 17, 2013 06:13AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zeljka (ztook) | 2804 comments Mod
“Be Careful What You Wish For”


Coraline is award-winning children horror fantasy novella written in 2002 by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Dave McKean. It is the story of a girl a bit unpleased with the daily life void of parental attention and care after they moved to an old, nightmarish mansion, so when she found a passage toward a world where all her dreams may come true, she was tempted to embrace that alternate version of her life but soon learnt that that world isn't so cool as it seemed to be.

The novella was adapted 2009 into enchanting stop-motion film made by Henry Selick, who's known also for The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) and James and the Giant Peach (1996). The film's official site, Coraline.com, seems also fun to check.

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As I am already awfully late with this introduction, that would be all :) As usual, freely post here whatever you wish and whatever you think of the novella and the film.


Cassie (cassabass) | 1 comments I, actually, just finished this two nights ago and was pleasantly surprised when I saw this post! I watched the movie today, and I must say.. I enjoyed the book much better. I found it to be creepier and I enjoyed using my own imagination when recreating all the characters in my head.


Maria K. | 7 comments I have already seen the movie, and I really liked it!! I think it's time for me to read the book!! :-)


Sanz | 1 comments I read this book about 2(?) years ago and I was surprised to actually find it a wee-bit unnerving. Definitely has the element of creepiness maybe even horror. I watched the movie too but I liked the book better. It is a nice, quick read so I would say, read on!


message 5: by Liz (new) - rated it 4 stars

Liz (hissheep) Read the book, saw the movie ...

Am always impressed by how Tim Burton (the movie producer) translates a book into a movie! I've also enjoyed a few books written by Neil Gaiman, including Coraline, and am in awe of his imagination. Good pairing of writer and producer!!

I'm not sure, however, what child wouldn't be creeped out by the story!


Kirstie (kirstienaughton) I actually just read this about 3 months ago (after I had already seen the movie) and was pleasantly surprised how closely the movie followed the book. In fact, many of the wording was straight from the book! With the exception of some movies, I find this very rare. It is super easy to read, but definitely not a children's book as some people might think!


Elena | 109 comments I judged this book (and the animated movie) pretty harshly because – as a children's book & cartoon – I assumed it was made for children! And with all its morbidity - for children it is not! The cartoon/movie was just as morbid as the book…
>Buttons being sewn into eyes?! Really!?!?!? I HAD NIGHTMARES, let alone little kids!
>The 3 dead/ghost children who died locked up behind the mirror?! And their eyes have been gouged out?! Really?!?! Is this "child appropriate"?!
>The "spy doll" and creepy boy Whybe, whose grandma's sister was kidnapped as a kid and is one of the dead kids in the basement … just seems too horror-ish for kids!
>The two neighbors (starlet sisters) who stuff their dogs??? Real, dead dogs! :S Ew…

The animated movie creeped me out much more than the book and I thought it was better than the book, because it gives much more detail about the "other world"! Coraline visits the "other world" in the movie a few times before being creeped out and asked to have the buttons sewn into her eyes; whereas, in the book, she is only there once, we get barely any insight into this world, and she is already being freaked out by the scary "other parents" and asked to have her eyes gouged out...

The overall idea itself is very interesting, but for an adult horror story, NOT for kids.

If this was an adult book, I would have loved it, but this way - i just kept thinking "this is so morbid, i can't even imagine a 10 yr-old reading this and being able to sleep afterwards..."


Maria K. | 7 comments Kirstie wrote: "I actually just read this about 3 months ago (after I had already seen the movie) and was pleasantly surprised how closely the movie followed the book. In fact, many of the wording was straight fr..."


Well, I often think this way when I read a children's book that "pushes" the limit, but then I realize that when I was little I read many scary books and I also watched many scary movies. I think that children have more strength than we give them credit for...
I don't mean that they should watch The Exorcist or start reading Steven King by this age, but reading a whimsical and a little bit scary story isn't that bad! Especially when this story has a greater meaning and points out the meaning of true family and love.


Elena | 109 comments Creative - i guess you are right! Realistically, when i think of all the books i;ve read - they were definitely not all age appropriate and i'm no worse for wear :D


Zeljka (ztook) | 2804 comments Mod
Creative wrote: "I think that children have more strength than we give them credit for..."

True, I also sometimes remember myself when I was little, the things that now tend to disturb me didn't bother me then, not a little bit. Children do have different take on reality than we grown-ups do have, naturally. Just think about how fearless they are in some things while we as grown-ups would think twice (even thrice!) before doing the very same things.


Zeljka (ztook) | 2804 comments Mod
A week ago I've read a story again, and seen the movie two days ago. While the book didn't lost any of the charm from the first reading, the movie didn't hold up well. Book was creepy, some images were totally weird, but I didn't find it so frightening. Still, might not be suitable for very small kids, better for those of eleven and up.

The movie seemed much scarier than the book, I didn't feel comfortable even with the very first scene (view spoiler)! And the setting was different. Have you noticed the difference? In the book Coraline is quite kind and polite, well, as every proper English girl in our imagination should be ;), while in the movie she is sort of brusque, not insolent, rather biting. Well, that fitted the story of the film. I felt something is missing in the film. I wasn't really enjoying it - it was more a palette of extraordinary animation sequences than real story to be absorbed by, if you understand what I am trying to say. The Nightmare Before Christmas was a feature with heart I enjoyed very much, this one wasn't so touching.


Maria K. | 7 comments Well it's not the first time a movie doesn't live up to the expectations of those who read the book! But I first watched the movie (I think it was last year) while I read the book now... so I can't exactly define the differences... I will watch the movie again, and then I'll share my thoughts with you! :D


message 13: by Elena (last edited Apr 22, 2013 05:45AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Elena | 109 comments Zeljka wrote: "...The movie seemed much scarier than the book, I didn't feel comfortable even with the very first scene ..."

Exactly-there were quite a few scenes in the animated movie that I thought were very morbid...


Zeljka (ztook) | 2804 comments Mod
Creative wrote: " I first watched the movie (I think it was last year) while I read the book now... so I can't exactly define the differences... "

True, I didn't realize those differences too, until now, when I read and saw both within a short period of time. But, both are good considered separately. Dubious is only their appropriateness -- I think I made mistake when I said children novella, juvenile or young adult seems more fitting, in a stricter sense of that word -- for the ages of twelve to eighteen (and up).

Elena wrote: "Exactly-there were quite a few scenes in the animated movie that I thought were very morbid..."

Yes, those things you mentioned in the previous posts really were weird, especially last two that weren't in the book. Stuffed dogs -- that was odd, I do not really understand what was point of emphasizing that, the ladies were enough strange without that!


Alana (alanasbooks) | 730 comments Mod
I'll just post my review of the book, as I finished it today:

While I'm not certain I would be entirely comfortable with a very young child reading this story, as it has some rather scary elements, it's certainly an interesting story and a cute fantasy. It is not that interesting to adults unless you want to read it before seeing the movie or if you want to read it as a companion to your child. Nothing in the moral that is disturbing, except maybe further asserting that there is not occasion to fear that one's parents would ever feel they are better off without their child. This is assumed in the story, but not necessary asserted as specifically as might be necessarily to a child.
3/5

I haven't seen the movie yet, so I'm curious to see what I think and if I feel similarly to the rest of you. While the book might be feasible to read WITH a younger child, I'm wondering if the images in the film will be more disturbing.


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