I am a fan of Gaimans work and this did not disapoint. Hearing an author read their own work is a joy to me and Gaiman is one of the best at it. It is a bit adult for the younger edge of the young adult fiction but nicely dark for 12 and over set.
When I was a kid, there were a few books that shone a new light on the world for me, made it seem that anything was possible, made me want to tell stories of my own. For kids growing up now, this will be one of those books. An adult reader won't be disappointed either. This may be Gaiman's best so far.
The recording was excellent -- Gaiman is always the best reader of his own work -- but for one small flaw: the music between chapters remained a bit too loud as the voice resumed, so that the words are hard to make out for about the first minute of each chapter.
It may be listed as a kid's book, but it was a thoroughly enjoyable listen as an adult. Well thought out and written, the story revealed itself at an excellent pace. And, Neil Gaiman does a wonderful job telling the story. He's great to listen to - good pacing, good voices, not over the top or bland.
The beginning was far to dark and scary for my 4 younger children (ages 2-9) but the rest of the book was too bland for my 12 year old or myself. It was like Dean Koontz wrote a few sections in a Casper the Friendly Ghost book. I think it would have been a fine children's story if it omitted the details about the murders in the beginning. Do kids really need to visualize where the bodies were? And the section about the indigo man was pretty dark for middle readers, IMHO.
I have mixed feelings about Neil Gaiman's children/young adult fiction, but "Graveyard" was a winner. "Coraline" was charming and creepy, but I found "Stardust's" sex scenes plain inappropriate, especially for that genre. (Gaiman's occasional sliding into graphic coarseness is the reason why I avoid his adult fiction altogether.) He is a skilful storyteller, though, and I took a chance on "The Graveyard Book." I was very pleased by both the smoothness of the plot, the enjoyable characterization, and some well paced surprises (one of which at least did take me completely by surprise). And it was genuinely older kid/young adult friendly with no inappropriate scenes in my opinion; the scary bits were handled with tact and discreet detail hinted but not spelled out whenever something violent or scary was occuring. Gaiman's own reading style is one I find delightful and so "Graveyard" is a risk that paid off in full for me.
A mix between Harry Potter and middle earth, leaning towards middle earth. If thats your thing you will love it. If not don't use your credit.
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I had been waiting to listen to this for quite some time and am glad I finally did. As usual Gaiman is at his best, both as a writer and a narrator in this story. I think it is an excellent listen for both children and adults, though younger children might be upset by the dark tones of the book and the murders at the very beginning. But I sincerely came to love all of Gaiman's characters, and the details of graveyard life were fascinating.