Audie Award Finalist, Narration by the Author or Authors, 2014
Audie Award Finalist, Fiction, 2014
Sussex, England: A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. He is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock. He hasn't thought of Lettie in decades, and yet sitting by the pond (a pond that she'd claimed was an ocean), the unremembered past comes flooding back. Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie - magical, comforting, wise beyond her years - promised to protect him, no matter what.
A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. A stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly's wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.
©2013 Neil Gaiman (P)2013 HarperCollinsPublishers
Diane Owens Prettyman Novelist and Audio Book Producer
Gaiman's voice made me feel like I was in England sitting in a well-appointed drawing room with an elite group of listeners. We are all sipping tea while he tells us the true story of Lettie Hempstock.
Lettie Hempstock. She brightened the page with her calm and determination.
I was amazed at the writing and story telling. This is my first Gaiman book. I don't know where I've been!
I liked the magical realism and the imagery involved. The narrator was excellent, the language and pacing worked well.
The entire story kept me engaged.
I love to get scared in psychological thrillers and this book accomplished the same when the boy's father tries to drown him. It pulls the reader in to the feelings of helplessness we all experience as children intertwined with the sense of betrayal by his parent.
I always listen to this book in October. It is so deeply creepy and a wonderful portrayal of the terrors of childhood. I guess I am about Gaiman's age and so much of this story rings bells for me. A perennial favorite. Thanks Neil!!
Find an adventure...every day!
Neil is an excellent narrator, exhibiting great feeling for the "sound" of language. The writing is exquisite. Imagery hangs on long after the book ends. I am new to Neil Gaiman and this book was delicious with goose bumps and "then what happens?". I did not want the book to end. I can't wait for the next taste of Gaiman.
Absolutely listened to it in one sitting.
I had mixed feelings about this book. I could listen to Neil Gaiman narrate a nutrition label. I love his inflection, and the way he interprets and portrays his characters. He draws me into everything he writes. No matter how unusual the plot, his stories rarely fail to draw me in and sweep me away. This one, though good, didn't get me to suspend belief in quite the same way, so I often found myself distracted. It didn't hold my attention the way most of his do.
That said, I can't get enough of this guy's work and look forward to his next project's release!
Neil freaking Gaiman
I wouldn't, because I haven't read anything like it before.
Oh he's brilliant, no matter what he does. I love all his inflections and accents.
I love all the Hempstocks. Old Mrs. Hempstock is the best, especially when she's talking about the moon and how it was made.
It's an excellent story, better than The Graveyard Book. Not as fun for me as Neverwhere, but still really enjoyable.
I would recommend this book to anyone who remembers being afraid of things under the bed. It is a wonderful work of magical realism.
I like the way Gaiman exposes the powerlessness children feel and the hidden world children carry with them through the foreign confusing adult world. Reading this I was reminded of my younger self.
Emotive, un-put-down-able, thought-provoking
Huck Finn or Tom Sawyer, brilliant portrayal of childhood innocence, feelings, emotions. However while Mark Twain is more jovial, light reading (something a child would enjoy), Gaiman is for the young adult/adult. Much more emotional, scary and serious, more thought-provoking.
Extremely emotive voice which paints a much more vivid picture than just reading the text. Makes you feel like you are in the mind of the little boy who is the narrator in the story, the pacing of narration, inflection of tone etc. lend much more credibility than reading the words on a page would have.
Moments where the boy is feeling scared and afraid, you can feel the fear in Gaiman's voice, and the suspense is brilliant.
One of my all time favourites, brilliant in a 'opened up a whole new world' kind of way.
My first Gaiman novel, this has definitely inspired me to read/hear all his works.
The first audiobook I completed. Until I started this I preferred reading, audiobooks felt stilted,as if the narration was limiting my interpretation of the words, but with Gaiman, it feels like he is augmenting the words with feelings and emotions that can only be captured in speech.
Definitely has encouraged me to try more audio-books, though I still found most other narrators annoying.
It's both superficial and deep, mature and immature, touching and yet light-hearted. Fantastic book and a fantastic listen.
Yes! It was a great story and the author's narration gave it the perfect pace and intonation. It's just the right length for a cross country plane ride or a trans-atlantic one.
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