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Coraline by Neil Gaiman
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Coraline (edition 2002)

by Neil Gaiman, Dave (illustrator) McKean (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
12,734486186 (3.99)657
Member:Crotchetymama
Title:Coraline
Authors:Neil Gaiman
Other authors:Dave (illustrator) McKean (Illustrator)
Info:HarperCollins (2002), Hardcover, 192 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
Tags:None

Work details

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

  1. 210
    The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (FFortuna, moonstormer)
  2. 130
    Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders by Neil Gaiman (timspalding)
    timspalding: If Coraline doesn't quite live up to the hype, don't give up on Gaiman. Fragile Things is simply stunning.
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  5. 91
    Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury (infiniteletters)
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    The 13 Clocks by James Thurber (Bookshop_Lady)
    Bookshop_Lady: "Coraline" is creepy and might be too creepy for some kids. "The Thirteen Clocks" has a few creepy moments but overall is a light-hearted fairy tale. They're very different books and tell very different stories. But for all that, I believe older children/young teens who enjoy one of these books will probably enjoy both.… (more)
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    norabelle414: Both books are for children, but still manage to be dark and horrifying for all ages.
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    reading_fox: Slightly older YA, and a full novel. But the same theme, children move into a new place and discover a creepy 'fairy world' thats hard to escape.
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(see all 38 recommendations)

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» See also 657 mentions

English (471)  German (5)  French (3)  Spanish (2)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Italian (1)  Portuguese (1)  Catalan (1)  Dutch (1)  Polish (1)  All languages (488)
Showing 1-5 of 471 (next | show all)
This was the perfect book to listen to on a car trip from Connecticut to Cape Cod, with a 10 year old and 14 year old grandchild.

The story is creepy enough to keep everyone, including me, happy for the entire journey. Coraline Jones and her family have moved to a new flat in a big old house. The neighbors insist upon calling her Caroline, her parents tend to ignore her, and she is left on her own to wander about. Her father tells her to explore, and she asks her mother what is on the other side of the door that they never open. Her mother opens the door to a brick wall. Left on her own, she opens the door and finds the brick wall is gone. She goes through the door, and what she finds there....well, enough said. Creepy and dark, this tale is quite a lot of fun. (Although, I can understand why my 12 year old granddaughter won't watch the movie version.)

The book has won:
Book Sense Book of the Year Award Finalist, Children's Literature, 2003
Hugo Award Winner, Best Novella, 2003
Nebula Award Winner, Best Novella, 2003

Neil Gaiman's narration is wonderful.

From June 2013 ( )
  NanaCC | Jul 26, 2015 |
I loved this book as a kid and I always will. I love how Coraline feels like an introduction into the horror genre for children. The book lis so tasteful about introducing gory themes such as the other mother attempting to sew button eyes onto Coraline. Also, it goes through many scary tropes in a kid friendly way. However, bits of it get a bit dry and hard to follow. ( )
  alaina.loescher | Jun 25, 2015 |
Coraline is a piece of youth urban fantasy in many respects reminiscent of Roald Dahl’s The Witches. The tale follows Coraline, a girl who loves to explore, with parents who work at home and care for her but tend to ignore her. Coraline finds a passage into a mirror world with a woman who claims to be her ‘other mother’ and wants nothing more than for her to stay. As Coraline spends time in this world, created entirely by the creature masquerading as her mother, she begins to realize how dangerous and horrific a trap she is caught in. With sound advice from a cat, and the unknowing help of her elderly neighbors, Coraline must beat the creature at its own games to save herself, her parents, and the souls of children caught long ago. ( )
  Ailinel | May 1, 2015 |
As for the writing, excellent. Neil Gaiman is good at that. His descriptions are great, and he's a wonderful storyteller, were it not so disturbing a story. Yes, it has a nightmarish quality rather a lot like Alice in Wonderland, and probably worse. These books should be in a genre all their own titled Horror for Kids. At least it teaches a lesson, that we should appreciate what we have, even if what we have is not perfect. I liked Coraline's response to the bad people who try to give her exactly what she wants: "I don't want whatever I want. Nobody does. Not really." Quite clever. ( )
  KR_Patterson | Apr 28, 2015 |
A great book but a little too creepy and mind warping for me. I know many young adult readers need to be exposed to the dark parts of their mind to come to terms with good and evil and who they want to be. But, Gaiman really goes for the creepy twist on it all.
One thing I did like in Coraline was the battle of identity that occurs throughout the book. Identity is something many children have to search and find throughout their childhood. Coraline question what makes one person a person and how your surroundings affect you. This is a good concept for children to read and think about in this novel. Not my favorite I prefer a little bit sunshine and rainbows not beetles and button eyes as much. ( )
  crieder95 | Apr 9, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 471 (next | show all)
A modern ghost story with all the creepy trimmings... Well done.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times (Aug 11, 2001)
 

» Add other authors (84 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gaiman, Neilprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Braiter, PaulinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ernst, EnricoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gaiman, NeilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kivimäki, MikaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McKean, DaveIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Merritt, StephinComposersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riddell, ChrisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.
--G.K. Chesterson
Dedication
I started this for Holly, I finished it for Maddy.
First words
Coraline discovered the door a little while after they moved into the house.
Quotations
We are small but we are many/
We are many we are small/
We were here before you rose/
We will be here when you fall
Coraline was woken by the midmorning sun, full on her face.
For a moment she felt utterly dislocated. She did not know where she was; she was not entirely sure who she was. It is astonishing just how much of what we are can be tied to the beds we wake up in in the morning, and it is astonishing how fragile that can be.
Coraline sighed. 'You really don't understand, do you?' she said. 'I don't want whatever I want. Nobody does. Not really. What kind of fun would it be if I just got everything I ever wanted? Just like that, and it didn't mean anything. What then?
The pale figues pulsed faintly; she could imagine that they were nothing more than afterimages, like the glow left by a bright light in you eyes, after the lights go out.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please do not combine Coraline with the graphic novel adaptation Coraline nor with the film.
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Shortly after moving into an old house with strange tenants above and below, Coraline discovers a big, carved, brown wooden door at the far corner of the drawing room. And it is locked. Curiosity runs riot in Coraline's mind and she unlocks the door to see what lies behind it. Disappointingly, it opens onto a brick wall. Days later, after exploring the rest of the house and garden, Coraline returns to the same mysterious door and opens it again. This time, however, there is a dark hallway in front of her. Stepping inside, the place beyond has an eerie familiarity about it. The carpet and wallpaper are the same as in her flat. The picture hanging on the wall is the same. Almost. Strangest of all, her mum and dad are there too. Only they have buttons for eyes and seem more possessive than normal. It's a twisted version of her world that is familiar, and yet sinister. And matters get even more surreal for Coraline when her "other" parents seem reluctant to let her leave.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0061139378, Paperback)

Coraline lives with her preoccupied parents in part of a huge old house--a house so huge that other people live in it, too... round, old former actresses Miss Spink and Miss Forcible and their aging Highland terriers ("We trod the boards, luvvy") and the mustachioed old man under the roof ("'The reason you cannot see the mouse circus,' said the man upstairs, 'is that the mice are not yet ready and rehearsed.'") Coraline contents herself for weeks with exploring the vast garden and grounds. But with a little rain she becomes bored--so bored that she begins to count everything blue (153), the windows (21), and the doors (14). And it is the 14th door that--sometimes blocked with a wall of bricks--opens up for Coraline into an entirely alternate universe. Now, if you're thinking fondly of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe or Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, you're on the wrong track. Neil Gaiman's Coraline is far darker, far stranger, playing on our deepest fears. And, like Roald Dahl's work, it is delicious.

What's on the other side of the door? A distorted-mirror world, containing presumably everything Coraline has ever dreamed of... people who pronounce her name correctly (not "Caroline"), delicious meals (not like her father's overblown "recipes"), an unusually pink and green bedroom (not like her dull one), and plenty of horrible (very un-boring) marvels, like a man made out of live rats. The creepiest part, however, is her mirrored parents, her "other mother" and her "other father"--people who look just like her own parents, but with big, shiny, black button eyes, paper-white skin... and a keen desire to keep her on their side of the door. To make creepy creepier, Coraline has been illustrated masterfully in scritchy, terrifying ink drawings by British mixed-media artist and Sandman cover illustrator Dave McKean. This delightful, funny, haunting, scary as heck, fairy-tale novel is about as fine as they come. Highly recommended. (Ages 11 and older) --Karin Snelson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:27 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

Looking for excitement, Coraline ventures through a mysterious door into a world that is similar, yet disturbingly different from her own, where she must challenge a gruesome entity in order to save herself, her parents, and the souls of three others.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 13 descriptions

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