Coraline by Neil Gaiman

This weekend I read my first book for Banned Books Month. Here is my review for Coraline by Neil Gaiman.


Book cover of Coraline by Neil GaimanWhen Coraline explores her new home, she steps through a door and into another house just like her own – except that things aren’t quite as they seem. There’s another mother and another father in this house and they want Coraline to stay with them and be their little girl. Coraline must use all of her wits and every ounce of courage in order to save herself and return home… but will she escape and will life ever be the same again?

Elsewhere in this collection, a sinister jack-in-the-box haunts the lives of all the children who ever owned it, a stray cat does nightly battle to protect his adopted family, and a boy raised in a graveyard confronts the much more troubled world of the living. From the scary to the whimsical, the fantastical to the humorous, Coraline and Other Stories is a journey into the the dark, magical world of Neil Gaiman.

I first heard of Coraline when the movie was released I was excited to find out that the movie was based on the book by the same name. I never ended up seeing the movie, but the book made it to my to-read list. I have picked it up several times in the bookstore, but never ended up purchasing it. I was inspired to finally make the purchase when I found out it was a challenged book.

This story is geared towards a much younger audience–ages 8 and up–than the books I usually read. I was concerned this would make the story feel childish, but this was not the case. Gaiman created a suspenseful tale that I enjoyed very much. He depicted a rich world that I felt like I was traveling in. The quirkiness of the characters added to the story instead of serving as a distraction. Everything worked well together to create a book I didn’t want to put down.

This book has been challenged due to questions of its “age appropriateness.” It appears that parents have found the book “scary for younger children.” I know as a 20-something I found parts of this book to be on the scary side. I can see how someone twenty years younger than me would be scared by these passages. However, these bits of the book only added to the suspense. Any fear I experienced was for Coraline, and not for myself. Anything that was scary was written to advance the plot, and not for the sole purpose of scaring someone. The end result is a great tale that I would love to share with my child someday.

Review: I am glad that I finally found the time to read this story. It was a riveting book that I didn’t want to put down. A great book for children and those just young at heart. I can’t wait to read more of Gaiman’s work!


12 responses to “Coraline by Neil Gaiman

  1. I started to read this with Koti, she was reading it in school and asked me to read it too so we could talk about. It scared the heck out of me…I think I may not be scared of buttons 😛
    But she loved it. She is 9 I am 39….scared me more than it did her…

  2. um that should say I think I may now be scared of buttons…

    • hahaha don’t worry I understood. See I think it’s great that you and Koti read the book together. That’s what should happen instead of saying a child can’t read the book at all. I can’t wait to read books with my kids!!!

  3. Great review, Kimmy! I really like the other Neil Gaiman books I’ve read so far (Stardust, The Graveyard Book, and Good Omens). Not sure if this is going to go on my TBR pile or not. Not right now at least.

    For Banned Books week I have downloaded “Fahrenheit 451” from to listen to.

    • I really need to check out more of his books! I know that everyone I see talking about his stuff on twitter and such has had positive stuff to say. I can’t believe it took me this long to read something he has written.

      Yeah for downloading “Fahrenheit 451″! Yeah for people reading banned books!!!

  4. great write up! I think adults are more worried about a story scaring their kids than the kids are worried about being scared. And if people think Coraline is scary, they should The Graveyard Book, both of which I highly recommend as “a chapter a night” books for parents to read to their kids, or for kids to read to their parents.

    • I agree!

      I am thinking this book will be a great one for my nephews to read. I’ll make sure to also pass along a recommendation for “The Graveyard Book” and check it out myself!

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  5. Thanks for stopping by and reading my review of Looking for Alaska!

    Great review for Coraline. I’ve never read the book or seen the movie, but I will be giving away a copy of this on my blog as part of banned books week. It’s good to know that someone older could enjoy it as well as the younger audience it is geared towards.

    • That is great that you are giving away a copy for Banned Books Week. I love to see how many people are doing things to raise awareness of the week.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  6. I LOVE NEIL GAIMAN! I’ve read so many of his books this year and they’re all fantastic. I need to read Coraline but I’ve seen the movie which is great.

    AND he’s wrote a Doctor Who episode for next season. This man is a legend 😀

    • I heard that!!!!! I love it when great authors and the Doctor Who universe collide. I can tell after reading Coraline that he will make a great Doctor Who episode. he has the right amount of darkness in his eps that is PERFECT for Doctor Who. Can’t wait!

  7. Pingback: 2010 Books | IDK my BFF books

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