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The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

The Graveyard Book (original 2008; edition 2008)

by Neil Gaiman, Dave McKean (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
19,6631202180 (4.18)1 / 1299
Nobody Owens is a normal boy, except that he has been raised by ghosts and other denizens of the graveyard.
Title:The Graveyard Book
Authors:Neil Gaiman
Other authors:Dave McKean (Illustrator)
Info:HarperCollins (2008), Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:read, owned, fiction, YA, dead people, ghosts, coming of age

Work Information

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (2008)

  1. 343
    Coraline by Neil Gaiman (FFortuna, moonstormer)
  2. 253
    The Jungle Books by Rudyard Kipling (veracity)
  3. 181
    James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl (ut.tecum.loquerer)
  4. 185
    A Fine and Private Place by Peter S. Beagle (lorax)
    lorax: Beagle's work is not YA, but it is a classic, beautifully written love story involving ghosts and a man living in a cemetary.
  5. 130
    The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (emperatrix)
  6. 123
    Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones (ut.tecum.loquerer)
  7. 101
    Un Lun Dun by China Miéville (heidialice)
    heidialice: Both are fantastical YA at its best. Gaiman is an acknowledged inspiration for Mieville, and it shows, though he has his own distinctive style and voice.
  8. 91
    The House with a Clock in Its Walls by John Bellairs (timspalding)
  9. 1610
    Northern Lights by Philip Pullman (ut.tecum.loquerer)
  10. 71
    The Wolves in the Walls by Neil Gaiman (moonstormer)
  11. 61
    From the Dust Returned by Ray Bradbury (Ape)
    Ape: Eerily similar stories...
  12. 51
    Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders by Neil Gaiman (PghDragonMan)
  13. 40
    The Thief of Always by Clive Barker (kawika)
  14. 62
    The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly (jonathankws)
  15. 30
    Abarat by Clive Barker (kawika)
  16. 30
    The Palace of Laughter by Jon Berkeley (FFortuna)
  17. 20
    Down the Mysterly River by Bill Willingham (keeneam)
  18. 53
    Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling (Sandydog1)
    Sandydog1: Childhood and adolescent,murdered parents, supernatural, cultural and social isolation, ghosts - any Potter fan would love this quaint coming of age story.
  19. 20
    A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny (MyriadBooks)
  20. 97
    Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger (heidialice)
    heidialice: Similar in setting, and both ghost stories, these are very different books, but fans of one should be interested in the other.

(see all 35 recommendations)

Ghosts (2)
To Read (18)

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» See also 1299 mentions

English (1,180)  German (4)  Portuguese (Brazil) (2)  French (2)  Dutch (2)  Spanish (2)  Finnish (1)  Hungarian (1)  Romanian (1)  Catalan (1)  Italian (1)  Norwegian (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (1,199)
Showing 1-5 of 1180 (next | show all)
There is something to be said about being driven to read Neil Gaiman out of sheer desperation for a quality book.

Sometimes I have this mood.
It feels as if the world is a bleak place, and nothing good seems to be happening. And every single book I pick ends up being a crushing disappointment. And then I come to a point where I literally can't pick up a bad book - because it will end up being a straw that breaks the camel's back.

That's when I turn to my much beloved tried-and-true books and authors.
Sometimes this fails. And I end up not picking up a book for the longest time, discouraged, disillusioned and depressed.

This time my self-help remedy seems to have worked. And again was I reminded of why Gaiman is one of my go-to authors.
(I'm kind of dreading finishing this marvel of a book)

I promised myself to write a mostly coherent review of this gem. But a Good Book and coherency do not, generally, go together, as a rule, in my case at least.

It gets all the stars for being marvellously atmospheric, deliciously spooky and bloody interesting. Bloody too, for that matter. I love the ever-changing pattern of dark and light, Life and Death. So deliciously macabre!

This is Neil Gaiman. (as sure a trademark as any IMO)

Oh and I adore Silas. He is such a keeper.

If you are in a mind for something spooky, hesitate not.
Although, I suppose, there are people who will not like it much. ( )
  QuirkyCat_13 | Jun 20, 2022 |
Ahaah this book is so nice. I was tear-eyed at the end. Neil Gaiman makes so we care about Bod and the others and we are like glued to the pages. I was pissed off every time I had to interrupt my reading in this trip.
Nobody Owen is a very nice character, and you get attached to him so much because you know him since he is an infant! I was pretty sad when the story ended. I would have liked to now more about the other characters since the first time I read this book when I was younger.
I really loved this book. Just finished and I want to read it again! ( )
  thereadingpal | Jun 14, 2022 |
Excellent story! ( )
  Carmentalie | Jun 4, 2022 |
I remember finding this book deeply touching. ( )
  ByronDB | May 24, 2022 |
Everyone knows I love Neil Gaiman. So, no surprise that I enjoyed this book! It was a fun, interesting and intriguing story that I am so glad he finished and shared with us. Award-winning for a reason! ( )
  BarbF410 | May 22, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 1180 (next | show all)
Gaiman writes with charm and humor, and again he has a real winner.
added by lampbane | editVOYA, Rayna Patton (Jul 24, 2009)
Like a bite of dark Halloween chocolate, this novel proves rich, bittersweet and very satisfying.
This is fine work, from beginning to end, and the best bedtime story read-aloud material I've encountered in a long time. Can't wait until my daughter's old enough to read this to.
added by lampbane | editBoing Boing, Cory Doctorow (Oct 10, 2008)
When the chilling moments do come, they are as genuinely frightening as only Gaiman can make them, and redeem any shortcomings.
While “The Graveyard Book” will entertain people of all ages, it’s especially a tale for children. Gaiman’s remarkable cemetery is a place that children more than anyone would want to visit. They would certainly want to look for Silas in his chapel, maybe climb down (if they were as brave as Bod) to the oldest burial chamber, or (if they were as reckless) search for the ghoul gate. Children will appreciate Bod’s occasional mistakes and bad manners, and relish his good acts and eventual great ones. The story’s language and humor are sophisticated, but Gaiman respects his readers and trusts them to understand.

» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Neil Gaimanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Gaiman, NeilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Iacobaci, GiuseppeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McKean, DaveIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Parpola, InkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Plouhinec, Valérie LeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rhind-Tutt, JulianNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riddell, ChrisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Towfik, Ahmed KhaledTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Awards and honors
Rattle his bones
Over the stones
It's only a pauper
Who nobody owns

-- Traditional Nursery Rhyme
First words
There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.
Fortinbras Bartleby, ten years old when he had died (of consumption, he had told Bod, who had mistakenly believed for several years that Fortinbras had been eaten by lions or bears, and was extremely disappointed to learn it was merely a disease), now apologized to Bod.
“You’re always you, and that doesn’t change, and you’re always changing, and there’s nothing you can do about it.”
Nehemiah Trot said, “Ah, list to me, young Leander, young Hero, young Alexander. If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained.”
“And for that reason, if for no other, it is vital that the child be raised with as little disruption as possible to the, if you’ll forgive the expression, the life of the graveyard.”
"It's like the people who believe they'll be happy if they go and live somewhere else, but who learn it doesn't work that way. Wherever you go, you take yourself with you." p. 104
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This is the original prose book. Please don't combine it with any other format (Graphic novel, movie, etc).
Publisher's editors
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Nobody Owens is a normal boy, except that he has been raised by ghosts and other denizens of the graveyard.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Nobody Owens lost his "really" family when he was infant and became adopted by a ghost family in his local cemetery. Aside from having ghosts for parents and guardians he also persued by the mysterious man who killed his family.
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Average: (4.18)
0.5 3
1 34
1.5 9
2 140
2.5 42
3 779
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4 2480
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