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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
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...
Published on July 10 2004 by Matthew King

3.0 out of 5 stars Great Book! M.B
I recently read Coraline, by award-winning author, Neil Gaiman. Some of his books include American Gods, The Wolves in the Walls, and Endless Nights. Like most of his books, this one is directed to children and young adults. This is a fiction book with many themes; love, hate, curiosity, and many more.
Coraline and her family just moved out of their home and into a...
Published on Jan. 9 2004

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5.0 out of 5 stars Written for the 8 to 14 age range..., Sept. 10 2010
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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4.0 out of 5 stars Coraline, Aug. 26 2009
by Neil Gaiman
Harper Trophy, 2002
Children/Young Adult
162 pages
Supernatural Fiction

Buy the 2008 movie tie-in edition

Buy the 2009 graphic novel

Buy the Kindle edition

Neil Gaiman has been named as one of the top ten living post-modern writers (the Dictionary of Literary Biography). A prolific creator of comics, drama, poetry, prose and song lyrics, he's also been called the new face of horror fiction. You can even find him active in other media such as blogging, film, journalism, radio and television.

Coraline has won an incredible roster of awards and is, of course, a New York Times Best-seller. I decided to review Neil Gaiman's horror story for children because it was just released this past Tuesday as a DVD. This was a big deal in our household, as my 12-yr old daughter owns a copy of the book and the movie never came to our small city.

I can see why she was excited. Gaiman's story reads effortlessly. And the scenes are a wonderful collection of darkness and light, of horror and comedy and, always, even in the evil, of love. Through it all we follow Coraline, a bored schoolgirl on holiday and in a new home. The target of a wannabe mother from a sinister, alternate world, she too, is an interesting mixture of characteristics. Short as the book is, we delight in the growing understanding in the girl of what love means and of the sacrifices it sometimes demands.

Coraline is unlike Neil Gaiman's other mind-boggling works. It is a compact, lean and fully comprehensive piece. And I think it showcases just how brilliant this author is.

Note: In my opinion, the movie is a disappointment. Much of the shadowy feel of the written work is gone, surprising since the director is Tim Burton. Additional characters were added and scenes were modified, not for the better. My daughter says the movie was OK, but claims the book was better and commented on the same disappointments as I.

Copyright © Clayton Clifford Bye 2009
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3.0 out of 5 stars Better than buying your daughters 'Twilight', Jan. 11 2009
MC (ON, Canada) - See all my reviews
The story is annoyingly reminiscent of Roald Dahl, but I would buy this for a pre-teen reader. It's not too long, the language is clear, and the idea of a big old haunted house is appealing. Coraline herself is the kind of heroine that encourages kids to find things out, and think for themselves, rather than going along the easy path.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Never go through the door, Jan. 10 2009
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
Nobody can drench a book in creepy, dank atmosphere like Neil Gaiman -- and it doesn't matter if it's a kid's book.

And "Coraline" -- now being released as a movie -- is no exception to Gaiman's track record. It's a haunting little dark fairy tale full of decayed apartments, dancing rats and eerie soulless doppelgangers, as well as a gutsy heroine who finds herself in this ominous "other" world.

Newly moved into an aged apartment, Coraline (not "Caroline" is bored. Her parents are too busy to do anything with her, and her neighbors are either insane or boring.

It's the sort of relentlessly dull world that any little girl would want to escape from -- until Coraline does. She encounters a formerly bricked-up door that leads into an apartment in another world, which looks eerily like her own. In fact, it's so similar that she has a taloned, button-eyed "other mother" and matching "other father," as well as a chorus of singing, dancing rats and magical toys.

At first Coraline is fascinated by the other world, especially since her other parents are very attentive. Then she finds her real parents sealed inside a mirror. With the help of a sarcastic cat, Coraline ventures back into the other world. But with her parents and a trio of dead children held hostage, Coraline's only hope is to gamble with her own freedom -- and she'll be trapped forever if she fails.

Without Neil Gaiman's touch, "Coraline" would just be another story about a kid who learns to appreciate her parents. But he infuses this story with a dark fairy-tale vibe -- decayed apartments, dead children in a mirror, beetles, disembodied hands, monsters that cling to the wall with souls in their grip, and rats that sing about how "we were here before you rose, we will be here when you fall."

That dark, cobwebby atmosphere clings to the increasingly nightmarish plot, as Coraline navigates a world where the other mother has every advantage. And Gaiman's wordcraft is exquisitely horrible -- the other mother's hands are compared to spiders, her hair to undersea tentacles. And the fate of the other father is a magnificently ghastly thing.

He even infuses poetry into the horror ("A husk you'll be, a wisp you'll be, and a thing no more than a dream on waking, or a memory of something forgotten"), and a fair amount of macabre humour ("I swear it on my own mother's grave." "Does she have a grave?" "Oh yes. I put her in there myself. And when I found her trying to crawl out, I put her back").

Coraline herself is a wonderful little heroine -- strong, sensible, self-sufficient but still fairly freaked out about what is happening around her. The sarcastic cat is a wonderful counterpoint. And the other mother is the stuff of nightmares -- she's utterly inhuman and merciless -- who "wants something to love. Something that isn't her. She might want something to eat as well."

Neil Gaiman creates eerie, slightly warped worlds like nobody else, and he does an exquisitely horrible job in "Coraline." Just never go through the door.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gaimen Goodness, Nov. 8 2008
Todd C. Hirtle "TrueNorthCook" (Montreal, Quebec Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Coraline (Paperback)
As per all of his works, Gaiman created an interested and well-woven world around an interesting character. It is a short read but a pleasant one, possibly for children as young as ten with no upper age limit.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Coraline, May 20 2008
"Coraline" is a creepy little book. I read in one sitting, which attests to its shortness. Being an "adult" I still found it spine tingling, especially the black and white drawings that enhance the story. There is a graphic novel of this story coming out later this year and I will definitely check it out.

Kids from ages 8 to teen will love this book and its dark characters and its terrifying creepiness.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Boring book, Jan. 29 2003
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
I am a huge fan of Neil Gaiman, so it pains me to say this, but I found this book extremely boring and a tad too dark for young children. Coraline is not a very likable character. She doesn't have much going on that makes her interesting. Mr. Gaiman also doesn't do enough explore the other characters in the book, the two sisters, the man with the circus mice upstairs. I liked American Gods and Neverwhere much more. The characters were more interesting and there was more action.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Review, Feb. 21 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Came on time and was in perfect condition. I bought it for a class but I did not even read it, I watched the movie instead.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars MYSTERY, MAGIC, AND SUSPENSE, Nov. 8 2008
Gail Cooke (TX, USA) - See all my reviews
It's coming out as a film next year with a sterling cast (Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, etc), but you can treat yourself now by listening to the audio version of Coraline narrated by the author himself.

First off, the voice - quite listenable with barely a hint of an accent, although a decided British accent wouldn't have been at all out of place. This is a chilling story and Gaiman wisely gives it a straighforward reading, allowing his words as well as a bit of other worldly music by The Gothic Archies to reel a listener in. And, reeled in we assuredly were as I found myself sitting stock still for about three hours, totally enthralled.

Coraline is very much a normal little girl not usually given to make believe. She moves with her family into a new apartment, which she explores. She doesn't appear surprised one day when a door which once led nowhere now leads to a place that resembles her apartment but in a very odd, almost disjointed way. The inhabitants of this place are two button-eyed people who claim to be her other parents.

At first, this unlikely place is a bit of a treat as she has amazing toys here that she has never had before and even the food seems more tempting. It's not long before these seemingly loving other parents want her to stay with them forever. However, Coraline chooses to go to her real home only to discover that her actual parents have been stolen. There's little doubt as to who is behind the kidnaping as well the theft of a number of children's souls.

Coraline knows that somehow she must rescue her parents.

There's a lot of mystery in this story, a bit of magic, considerable suspense, and total enjoyment for listeners of all ages.

- Gail Cooke
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0 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars First Ever Purchase from Amazon, June 1 2010
Ron H. Kryger "J - man" (Manitoba, Canada) - See all my reviews
I am Joel's father and am writing this review on his behalf. Your service was reffered to us and since Joel is an avid reader he was most enthused to try out as it represented a source FOR BOOKS THAT HE COULD EVEN USE HIS ALLOWANCE TO BUY HIS OWN BOOKS!! Needless to say we were most deflated that after Joel had found chosen and purchased his first book that it simply never showed up. I can understand to a certain degree that this could very well have been a "mail issue", but the vendor from which we made our purchase did simply without question inform us that they would be refunding our money,,,,,, end of story. I am in the service industry myself and in fact in a position that I can from time to time find myself in a position sitting across from a client that may not have had a service experience that met their satisfaction. I can tell you that if i simply gave everybody their money back without trying to salvage that relationship I would quickly be out of business. I suppose I was disappointed that on our very first experience with that there is clearly no effort to try and do business but rather we are a face that this vendor believes will never have to deal with, so just give them back their money back and hopefully they'll just get lost???? Not sure what we are supposed to do from here??? Thank you for listening, sincerely,

Ron Kryger.
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Coraline by Neil Gaiman (Hardcover - Aug. 2003)
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