Customer Reviews


178 Reviews
5 star:
 (103)
4 star:
 (45)
3 star:
 (13)
2 star:
 (15)
1 star:
 (2)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


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


‹ Previous | 117 18 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

5.0 out of 5 stars Once you start, you have to finish or you're stuck in there, July 8 2002
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
When reading "Coraline" one has the almost overwhelming urge to read phrases and paragraphs and entire chapters to anyone within range. The first impression I got when I read it was that the author desperately wanted to come to each and every person's house and read the book, and that the print version was only a temporary measure.
Well, okay, that was the second impression. The first impression was that this was a seriously creepy story. Not terrifying in the way that so many authors try to startle you or shock you, but ominously creepy in such a way that you have to keep reading or the story will never end and you'll go through the rest of your life with this crawly feeling all over you.
Coraline is a young girl, small for her age, whose family moves into a new house. The house used to be larger before it was subdivided, and so there is an old door opening onto a brick wall. Coraline is fascinated by this intriquing exception to an otherwise boring existence; this, along with some odd neighbors, are all that liven up her summer days. Further investigation leads to a mysterious other side, complete with other side parents determined to keep Coraline with them, even if it means stealing her real parents away. This may be a children's book, but only in that it speaks with a child's sensibilities and focus. At no point does "Coraline" speak down to the audience, and that's one of the marks of a children's book that will last.
The other is excellent writing, and he's got that covered too.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Turn the Key, July 6 2002
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
There once was a young girl named Coraline who moved into a new flat with her mother and father. The neighbors are friendly, if not a bit odd and a bit confused, repeatedly calling her "Caroline" by mistake. The little girl is a self-proclaimed explorer, taking walks around the neighborhood no matter what the weather. With both of her parents occupied by work, she counts the doors at home, and figures out how to open up a door which is supposed to open up to nowhere - more specifically, a brick wall...
Coraline's curious nature is akin to that of Alice (in Wonderland), Anne (of Green Gables) and other historical young heroines. Far from being a damsel in distress, Coraline is witty, intelligent and aware. Her 'White Rabbit' comes in the shape of a black cat who has no name; as he wryly explains to her, cats know who they are so they don't need names, unlike insecure human beings.
"Coraline" is a fantastic read for all ages, genders and critters. This is a book to read late at night when huddled under the covers with a flashlight. The gothic feel of this book will please long-time Neil Gaiman fans as well as fans of classic dark fairy tales.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars deliciously creepy, July 3 2002
By 
Nadyne Richmond (Mountain View, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Coraline (Hardcover)
Neil Gaiman is a master storyteller. His diction is perfect. He does not waste words, but is not miserly with them either. His descriptions never fail to rouse a knowing nod and smile from the reader. Even when writing a quick throwaway piece in his journal...his style is impeccable.
For this novel, Neil sets his eyes on another audience: young adults. He gives children (or, as he has said, 'strange little girls of all ages and genders' - a nod to his friend Tori Amos and her 2001 "Strange Little Girls" album) a deliciously creepy novel about a girl, a new flat, and her other mother.
Coraline (not Caroline, even though all of the adults who live in the other flats keep on saying it that way and ignoring her corrections) and her parents move into a new home. One day, she pesters her father one too many times, so he sends her off on an expedition: find the water heater, count everything blue, count all the doors and windows. She does so, and is shocked to find that there are 13 doors that open and one that doesn't. She asks her mother what is behind the 14th door, and is told that it was bricked over when the house was broken up into flats. Her mother unlocks the door to show her this, but doesn't lock it again.
Later, Coraline creeps back, and finds that the door opens into another flat. It is just like her own, but not quite. In her room (green and pink, not boring like her own), she finds the sorts of clothing that she thinks she would have if she could pick out her own wardrobe -- not a grey school skirt, but costumes. In the kitchen, she finds her other parents -- not her real parents who work and don't play with her, but other parents who cook real food (not something from a "recipe" involving tarragon and butter beans) and dote upon her. Coraline knows that this is not right, and returns to her own flat.
Thus begins Coraline's adventure. The other mother steals Coraline's parents. Coraline returns to the other flat to get them back. Along the way, she makes friends with the most sarcastic of cats and finds the ghosts of other children who were stolen away by the other mother.
Gaiman's mastery of timing has never been shown so well than in this novel. Just when things are getting really scary, he breaks in with a droll and dry line that makes the reader laugh. This is a novel that is just begging to be read aloud -- as Neil Gaiman himself did on 02 July 2002 in Berkeley, California. His audience, around 500 people, hung on his every word. The adults in the audience were just as delighted as the children to have someone read such a delicious story to them. If you dislike reading aloud, you can always buy the audio CD (complete, unabridged) version of this story.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful and Engaging!, June 18 2002
I received the audio CD of Coraline in the mail yesterday in the early afternoon. I'd read the book, and heard parts of it read by the author here and there, so I put it on for background, while I did other things. The "other things" didn't even get started for roughly three hours.
The recording begins with a verse from a quirky Gothic Archies tune in which Stephin Merritt sing-songs, "You are not my mother, and I want to go home," over layers of atmospheric dings and bonga-bongas. The song echoes the story's cohesion of humor and spookiness, and is split into three parts, playing a bit before each of the three CDs.
The story itself is a delight. Coraline is a typical child-explorer, examining the house and grounds to which she recently moved, uncovering the strange personalities that inhabit her world, and discovering that a door in her home which was previously bricked-up actually leads to a misty echo-world where old, hungry, button-eyed creatures masquerade as her other parents, having parent-napped her real parents, while trying to convince her to stay there forever so that they can keep her soul . . . Well. Perhaps her story is not so typical. Not typical, also, are the fantastic characters who pop in and out of the story, such as the Slavic mustached man who lives in the upper flat and is training a mouse circus, and his other-self, or the pair of dotty, but kind, retired theater mavens who read tea leaves and worry about their dogs' tummies, and their less-benevolent, other-world counterparts. Like any true exploration story, Coraline has an assistant for the more dangerous times, in the form of a condescending, snarkily witty black cat. And like every true exploration story, there are acts of great courage and startling discoveries made along the way.
Neil Gaiman is an engaging and expressive reader, as well as writer. He infuses the characters with a spark all their own, changing cadences and even accents, always to the benefit of the story. The pacing is smooth and quick, with minute dips and well-placed pauses that give the shivers a chance to manifest before the story is once again plunging on to the good stuff.
Coraline is a story that begs -- no, demands -- to be read aloud. Usually the problem is that someone has to be the reader, while the listeners get to experience the full effect and thrill of the story. Let the author be the reader, and indulge yourself in the sheer delight of hearing a wonderful story told well.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


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.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars MYSTERY, MAGIC, AND SUSPENSE, Nov. 8 2008
By 
Gail Cooke (TX, USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
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
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Boring book, Jan. 29 2003
By 
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.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars First Ever Purchase from Amazon, June 1 2010
By 
Ron H. Kryger "J - man" (Manitoba, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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 Amazon.ca 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 Amazon.ca 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.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 117 18 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First
ARRAY(0xa8bebe1c)

This product

Coraline
Coraline by Neil Gaiman (Hardcover - Aug. 2003)
Used & New from: CDN$ 8.42
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews