30 June, 2013

The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman [Aimee, Howick Library]

It's quite simple really: this book RULES.  And people should know about it.  But it's far from a simple story, and I'm not quite sure where to begin.  Beautiful and complex is how I'd describe both the story and the characters.  The type of book that warrants a re-read.  Plenty in there that may have been missed first time through, ready to be discovered another time.  Personally, I love stories like this.

Let's go for the simple synopsis approach.  Returning to Sussex for a funeral, the un-named narrator decides to take a breather by visiting the site of his childhood home.  Memories then surface of a friend who lived in the old farmhouse down the lane.  He ends up sitting by the lake (which his friend, Lettie Hempstock, insisted was an ocean) and is flooded with memories of the evil that was unleashed there 40 years ago.  Things he’d completely forgotten about.  Very dark things that no seven-year-old should have to deal with.

The wee lad, Lettie, and her mother and grandmother are the heroes of the story.  I was so invested in their plight that it was almost unbearable.  You know that feeling of wanting to race through the pages but at the same time not wanting the story to end too soon?  Well yeah, it’s like that.  And the villain… Ugh, shivers up the spine combined with the desire to punch a face in.  Frightening.

At the time of posting, there are 127 holds on this book.  Not too bad in the grand scheme of library request lists.  And well worth the wait!

Title: The Ocean at the End of the Lane
Author: Neil Gaiman
ISBN: 9781472200327
Published: 2013
Publisher: Headline

- Aimee, Howick Library

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