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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable for children and adults
Coraline by Neil Gaiman is a short, eerie and enjoyable tale about a girl learning to appreciate her parents through a peculiar experience. The story is interesting enough to keep a person's attention throughout. The story was brilliant and aspects of it reminded me of 'Alice Through the Looking Glass' by Lewis Carroll. The writing is amazing and makes the most ordinary...
Published on June 16 2009 by Sam

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars brief fairy tale - not much more
There really should be a law about over-enthusiastic "reviews" on the covers of books. On the cover of Coraline, the New York Times is quoted as writing "one of the most frightening books ever written!" On the inside, a who's who of young adult writers gush over how inventive and scary this book is.

I'm really sorry - but the hype here is a bit much for 162...
Published on July 17 2008 by Tommy Tom Tom


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable for children and adults, June 16 2009
By 
Sam (British Columbia) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Coraline by Neil Gaiman is a short, eerie and enjoyable tale about a girl learning to appreciate her parents through a peculiar experience. The story is interesting enough to keep a person's attention throughout. The story was brilliant and aspects of it reminded me of 'Alice Through the Looking Glass' by Lewis Carroll. The writing is amazing and makes the most ordinary events seem exciting. I believe I would have enjoyed it more if someone didn't ruin the ending for me.

Coraline's family moves into a part house that has a door in it, which when opened, leads to a brick wall. In the other parts of the house lives a crazy old man named Mr. Bobo, and two elderly women that claimed to be actresses, named Miss Spink and Miss Forcible.

One summer night, Coraline awakens to find that the other side of that strange door leads to another world in which lives the other mother, the other father, the other crazy old man, the other Miss Spink, and the other Miss Forcible. These parodies of the people she knows have buttons for eyes, and the other mother does not want Coraline to leave.

Will Coraline ever manage to make it back home to her true parents?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gaiman rules, May 28 2013
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This review is from: Coraline (Kindle Edition)
Another dark, twisty tale that should never have been made into a kid's movie! Gaiman has such neat ideas and is inspired by such mundane things!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Audio Book!, Dec 15 2012
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Our whole family loves this audio book. A bit scary for young ones but our 6 and 8 year old were delighted with it. We have listened to it many times. The readers has a great voice.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Coraline - Awesome, Sept. 24 2012
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This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
I received this book in OK/decent time. Not the fastest product i've ever received but not the slowest. It was in perfect condition, and had cool graphics on the jacket of the book which can't be seen in the display picture. The story was awesome and extremely creative, excellent author. I would highly recommend this product.
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2.0 out of 5 stars brief fairy tale - not much more, July 17 2008
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This review is from: Coraline (Paperback)
There really should be a law about over-enthusiastic "reviews" on the covers of books. On the cover of Coraline, the New York Times is quoted as writing "one of the most frightening books ever written!" On the inside, a who's who of young adult writers gush over how inventive and scary this book is.

I'm really sorry - but the hype here is a bit much for 162 triple-spaced pages of decent but not spectacular young adult writing.

Coraline has one adventure, nothing about the adventure is any more inventive, or scary, than the stuff that Pullman, Nix, Stroud and the other heavy hitters in this field do, and then it is over. Where the NY Times gets off calling this one of the scariest books ever written is beyond me.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars There's magic behind those walls and inside of this book, July 10 2004
By 
Matthew King (Toronto, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Coraline Jones is a little girl (precise age unknown) who has recently moved into a big old house with her parents. It is the summer break from school and Coraline is bored. To pass the time she likes to explore the big house and its surroundings. One afternoon, she finds a door that leads into a black corridor. This black corridor in turn leads into a house that is practically a mirror image of her own, with the same rooms and the same inhabitants, including her parents. But within these there are fundamental changes; the rooms contain weird variations of her toys, the house and the yard are filled with talking animals and her parents are very different here too. They look like her parents but certainly don't act like her parents. Soon, Coraline and her real parents are trapped into this mirror version of their house and it is up to her to get them out safely...
This is a challenging book to categorize. It is actually marketed as a book for children and adults 8 years and up. The writing is indeed geared towards a younger age bracket, the prose simplistic, the sentences short-clipped. Not only is the novel only 160 pages long, but it's large print as well. I personally breezed through this book in less than 2 hours. However, one has to wonder whether this book might be a little too dark for young kids to enjoy. Gaiman raises some deep chills here and goes for the grotesque on occasion with several scenes involving insects. Usually I find the term "Dark Fantasy" to be a cop-out used by authors who would rather not be referred to as horror writers so as not to be pigeonholed into a genre that has its ups and downs (Dean Koontz anyone?) but with Gaiman the term actually seems to fit like a glove. There's something very magical about his writing that makes us feel a part of the world he is crafting despite the fantastical premise.
I loved how Gaiman used the short length of his story to his advantage. The story wastes little time getting started as Coraline actually stumbles upon the magical door at around page#25. Lots of things happen in the novel especially once the "challenge" is set forth between Coraline and her other evil mother, the pace picks up and the pages become filled with action and adventure. And the ending feels appropriate and satisfying too. The only thing I wish would have been included is some explanation, no matter how small, of how this alternate dimension came to be. But then again part of the appeal of Gaiman's work has always been about the mystique and unexplained weirdness of his tales. "Coraline" is a treasure of a story, wrapped in a small package that won't require more than two hours of a reader's time and yet will leave a lasting impression.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trippy, May 23 2004
By 
Illiterati (Ivins, UT United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
I only slept two hours the night I read "Coraline." The first few hours I read and finished the book; the next couple hours I couldn't sleep, reveling in the creative world this book took me too that no other book has. There was not a cliche anywhere: not in story, language, mood, characters. Instead we have scuttling hands, fortune-telling mice, button eyes, and worlds disolving into nothingness on the outskirts.
The unflappability of the young girl protagonists threatens to make the book too low key (as some reviewers have accused), but instead, I think it adds to the odd, vague tone. Also accurate in the negative reviews is their observation that there's a lack of background for this world's existence and for the characters in it. I respond, hallelejah. How many thousands of books are ruined by too much exposition. This book gets to the dark, otherworldly story pronto. Its world is assumed to exist and needs no justification.
Stephen King has never creeped me out like this. I'm reading this book to my seven year old daughter (against the advice of my wife) and loaning it to my tough guy, non-reading friend.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Open the Door, and Enter the World of a Child's Worst Nightmare, May 27 2006
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
Young Coraline Jones and her loving yet very preoccupied parents move into an enormous, ancient household. But they do not all of the house; instead, they only own one floor, the middle flat. On the bottom flat leave the two retired old actress ladies who also read tea leaves for fortune-telling, Miss Spink and Miss Forcible. On the top flat, with the attic, lives the resident whom Coraline refers to as "the crazy old man upstairs," who often tells Coraline that he runs an immensely talented circus made entirely of mice.

Coraline loves to explore, and throughout the gardens and courtyards outside, there is much to explore. But one day, when it is pouring rain outside, Coraline asks her mother what she should do. Coraline's mother tells her to ask her father---so Coraline does. Coraline's father tells her that she should count everything blue, all the doors, and all the windows in the house. Later, after Coraline's counting is complete, she realizes there are fourteen doors, yet only thirteen seem to open. Coraline's mother uses the key to open the fourteenth door to show her that it only opens to a solid brick wall.

Or so it seems...

In the middle of the night, Coraline awakens to an eerie sqeaking and then a scraping scuttle sound. She follows the scuttle to the fourteenth door, which now newly opens to a long, dark hallway. Coraline walks through the hallway and discovers that this door opens to a whole new world. In this world, Coraline has an other mother and an other father, who both have big black, shiny buttons for eyes, and also who do not mispronounce Coraline's name as "Caroline." The other world is a complete mirror image of the real flat at home, yet hideously distorted.

Coraline's other mother wants her to stay with her and the other father in this other world, but when Coraline leaves, she discovers, horrified, that her real mother and father have been kidnapped by the other mother, in an attempt to get Coraline back to her. Now, the only way left for Coraline to gain back her real parents is to challenge the other mother to a treasure hunt, and with the help of self-centered talking black cat, Coraline must fight for her very life in the other mother's deadly game.

This novel surprised me. I was never suspecting that a slim novel like this could be such a page-turner, or that it could be so suspenseful, horrifying, eye-widening, and entertaining all at the same time. I would hardly consider this a children's novel, especially because many of the horrific monsters, as well as the bitter cruelty of the other mother and the distorted world she has created, could scare small children. Still, this is an excellent novel that could scare even the bravest of adults, and I am highly anticipating the film adaptation of this novel.

Highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wins the Nebula Award!, April 19 2004
By 
Richard J. Arndt (Elko, NV USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
This short novel wins almost every major fantasy & science fiction award but once again the ALA committee blows it by handing the Newbury to an inferior novel. [I'm a librarian and can say that with some amount of authority--although maybe not much.] This book is an instant classic but was probably too dark for the at times very timid committee. At least Gaiman's not alone. E. B. White didn't win for Charlotte's Web and S. E. Hinton didn't win for The Outsiders. I suspect for much the same reasons. Regardless this is a beautifully written tale with a fine, tough little kid with dry wit and great courage working her way through events that would panic most adults. If the book reminds you a bit of Alice In Wonderland, good. It should. Both are books that are dark enough to unnerve some adults and good enough to enchant children. I'll be reading this one to my kids, grandkids and whoever will listen until I'm in my dotage. Buy it, you won't regret it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Written for the 8 to 14 age range..., Sept. 10 2010
By 
Ronald W. Maron "pilgrim" (Nova Scotia) - See all my reviews
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While I purchased this book thinking that it would be another one of Gaiman's fantasies that is applicable for all ages, it is not. This is strictly a book that was written for children and, because of this, my review is based on that and not on any adult interpretation of the book.

Neil Gaimon, again using his superb writing skills, has produced a book that easily should appeal to the 8 to 14 age range. The book, itself, is not lengthy and is grammatically written in a manner that is easily understood. While some may view this novel as being a little too dark for children, it is less frightening than some of the other children's classics (The Wizard of Oz, The Hobbit, Grimm's Fairy Tales, etc...) Coraline, the heroine, is simply overtly faced with the imaginings that most children her age have. Things living under the bed, animals that talk, the door that is always locked and unfullfilled parental attention are a few examples of these imaginings. While I do recommend this reading for the given age range, I would also strongly encourage parents to provide discussion periods with the child to have them more fully understand the message that the book gives and ease any possible fears that were triggered by the novel's imaginary setting.
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Coraline
Coraline by Neil Gaiman (School & Library Binding - Aug. 1 2003)
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