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Publisher's Summary

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

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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  • Tina
  • Nibley, UT, United States
  • 05-28-16

The perfect narrator!

I enjoyed this story as a trip down memory lane. I don't believe any other person could narrate this with the same skill. I have felt like my imagination grew during this audio book and I feel so much more in awe of the world around me.

I want to write. I want to explore. I want to picnic in fairy rings. Such joy of being a big kid.

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Lovely

I couldn't wait to find out what happened, but I didn't want the story to end. it's so bittersweet and wonderful. highly recommended!

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Enchanting

This story is not what I was expecting. But was delightfully imaginative and enchanting. Being narrated by the author allows the story to come alive exactly as it was intended to when written.

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Great narration

I guess this story is a little too whimsical and magical for my taste. The descriptions are amazing and create vivid images for the reader which is why it's hard for me to come up with a fair rating. The author obviously has a vivid imagination and based on other reviews it's a wonderful story. I can't not recommend it… I think each reader has to decide for themselves whether it's something they love or not.

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  • Eugene
  • Bonney Lake, WA, United States
  • 05-24-16

A truly wonderful childhood recollection

Would you consider the audio edition of The Ocean at the End of the Lane to be better than the print version?

I think that Neil Gaiman's narration added something to the text that no one else could have, nor would the simple text have been as powerful. This is truly a masterpiece.

What other book might you compare The Ocean at the End of the Lane to and why?

There are many childhood fantasies, but this one stands alone in my estimation. It possesses the best element of imagination combined with a child's eye view of the world and the people who inhabit it. The concept of a tiny piece of land that becomes a whole world and a duck pond that becomes the ocean could only happen in the mind of a child. Even though you know that it is a fantasy, a part of you wishes it were all true. Though a very different book it did remind me a bit of Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Thing Are which I read to my son over and over when he was child.

Any additional comments?

I have read (listened to) a few of Gaiman's books, but I have never been captivated by them before. This book absolutely held me, possessed me, as it were. It is a work of real genius that belongs along side of Exupery's The Little Prince as a book that can be read and reread many times.

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A modern fairytale

it's read so beautifully and the story is so charming and scary and engaging. Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite authors and this is one of my favorite stories.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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This book is not a mystery/thriller.

The description of this book is unclear to the listener. It is not about unraveling a mystery it is about witches and other worldly creatures in a little boy's imagination.
If you enjoy stories about witches/goblins then this story will appeal to you.
I do not. I feel it was misrepresented in its description. Also, the sample does not allow the listening to fully understand that it not a story about a boy finding a body in the car by a barn it is about a boy's wild imagination and his relationship with witches after a creature enters this world through his body. I knew about 10 minutes into listening that it was not for me. Sadly I used my only credit.
Happy listening.

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Another great Neil Gaiman book.

The Ocean at the end of the lane reminded me of the childrens stories my father use to rwad to me at bed time. It would be a good book for people of all ages. Having lessons that can be grasped by both young and old alike. Having Neil G. read it himself also brought in that touch of authenticity of having this type of book performed as I would expect. I think it slso helps to bridge the gap between author and reader almost like giving you a glimpse in to to how Neil G. imagined it.

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Wonderful

Great story of course. Always a joy to listen to Neil Gaiman narrate. Thank you

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Out of my comfort zone....

I am glad to have stepped out of my comfort zone to hear this wonderful book.