Winner of the Specsavers National Book Award for The Audible Audiobook of the Year
The Ocean at the End of the Lane is a fable that reshapes modern fantasy: moving, terrifying, and elegiac - as pure as a dream, as delicate as a butterfly's wing, as dangerous as a knife in the dark - from storytelling genius Neil Gaiman.
It's about memory and magic and survival, about the power of stories and the darkness inside each of us. It began for our narrator 40 years ago, when the family lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed.
Dark creatures from beyond this world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: there is primal horror here, and a menace unleashed - within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it.
Contains a special introduction from Neil Gaiman
©2013 Neil Gaiman (P)2013 Headline Digital
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"Magical but real..."
A very nearly believable fable with odd characters flitting between times and actions, being young and very very old, in this world and another. It's almost mythic with a almost logical narrative which requires some suspension of belief in order to immerse yourself in the ocean and figure out for yourself what is happening to the main character. Not sure that's meant for children, but I had to move my mind into a child's mind to connect and link some actions.
forgotten childhood memories
I think this book is a highly unusual combination of childhood memoir and magic fairy tale. I cannot think of any other book that is comparable.
Hm, I'm not sure about that. I notice there were lots of positive comments about the author reading his own work, but at times I felt that an actor would have done a better job. I focused too much on his voice and accent and sometimes found it a little hard to listen to.
Neither, but it was very absorbing and enjoyable.
"Possibly my favourite book ever!"
Powerful, moving, remarkable
the unnamed narrator. I identify with him, and, strangely, have had some similar experiences.
I have listened to An Evening with Neil and Amanda, his speech to art graduates and I am currently listening to American Gods. If they gave Oscars for voice acting on Audio-books Neil's performance on The Ocean at the end of the Lane, would be the winner!
When the narrator realizes that all three women are one and the same.
This is easily one of the best books I have read in my 53 years. Magical, poignant and profound. I can't recommend it highly enough.
"A lovely story and wonderfully read"
As usual this is an outstanding performance by Neil Gaiman. There is something to be said about an author reading their own work, and I think that it makes it so much more engaging.
"Childhood through adult eyes"
As a fan of Neil Gaiman's previous work, I approached this new novel with great interest as it promised to include more realism than usual. It's a short book, but it suits its length well – Gaiman has turned out a little gem.
The blending of fantasy and the real works well, but Gaiman is on firmer ground with his treatment of the fantastical as he lets his considerable imagination fly. The more realistic narrative by contrast seems to come from a less experienced author, but it is still solid and well written, so my impression is just that Gaiman is still not completely comfortable with writing about real things.
Gaiman's narration is excellent as always and I would highly recommend that readers give any of his audiobooks a try.
"Magical and beautiful, but without any sugar"
This novel creates a magical world set in memory and reality. The reader is invited into the world and explores it through the eyes of an accepting child. But it's not a saccharin tale, there is fear, insecurity and an ending which.... well, that would spoil things. A totally engaging listen.
"Short but wonderful"
The story is very well told and quite dark. Its quite a short audio book but so worth a listen and made all the more interesting by having Neil Gaiman read it. Well up to his usual standard.
"Dark and beautiful."
Neil Gaiman warns readers in his audio introduction that this tale is going to be dark and it is, much darker than his other stories that I have read. Without spoiling it I will say it is not unremittingly bleak or without hope, so I would advise against choosing not to read it, which I admit, I might have initially done had I known. If you watch films there are aspects here that remind me of both Studio Ghibli and Pan's Labyrinth.
Gaiman takes the reader into what first appears to be a comforting but normal environment, then quickly boots them out of the rabbit hole into somewhere far less safe but absolutely fascinating. The story is beautifully and imaginatively written, the characters interesting and varied and the plot was so good that I couldn't put it down.
This is admittedly a shorter book than some but in my opinion better value than many, as it is one I can see coming back to again and again.
Neil Gaiman readers with the talent of the best narrators and the enthusiasm and understanding of the story's author. There are a few narrators who could have done as good a job but I don't think anyone could have bettered his performance.
"Best book I've had for a while"
I've listened to some great audiobooks but this one ranks at the top.
Short and extremely memorable. I felt wrung out after reading this. And wanted to start again from the start!
Great performance. So heart felt and I was there with him.
"Easily the best listen I`ve had so far!"
The story is a terrific fantasy which at times is beautifully dark and sinister, seen through the eyes of a young boy, the characters are really brought to life.
I also really enjoyed the authors accents.
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