Friday, 13 May 2011

Neil Gaiman: The Graveyard Book (Audiobook)

This was my first introduction to the weird and wonderful stories of British author Neil Gaiman.

The story of the book is inspired by Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book.

At the beginning of the story, a little boy, barely a toddler, narrowly escapes being murdered by a mysterious figure known as "The Man Jack" who creeps in to his house in the middle of the night and kills the boy's family.

By chance, the toddler wanders into a nearby graveyard, and is subsequently adopted by Mr and Mrs Owens, who happen to be ghostly inhabitants of the graveyard, and they name him Nobody Owens.

The rest of the book follows Nobody (Bod for short) as he grows up in the graveyard. Bod has a guardian named Silas who, along with his friend Miss Lupescu, teaches Bod about the arts of fading, dream walking and haunting.

Bod befriends a girl called Scarlet, who is visiting the graveyard with her parents. And perhaps because of this friendship, as he grows up, he starts yearning to leave the graveyard. But the outside world isn't a safe place, "The Man Jack" hasn't given up on tracking down the child who escaped his clutches.

The audiobook is read by the author, and a sterling job he does too. Mr Gaiman voices all the characters in a very entertaining way. The atmosphere of this audio presentation is further enhanced by the music at the start and end of each chapter, a piece rather aptly titled "Danse Macabre".

If you've never tried any of his work before I would have no hesitation in recommending this.


  1. I'd recommend it as well. It is one of my favourite audiobooks from Audible so far, and Neil Gaiman makes a very good reader.

  2. Neil Gaiman's The Sandman inspired my 'video minor' project at Bournemouth University! Never imagined he'd write for Doctor Who...