I fell in love with Neil Gaiman just of late. I absolutely adore his humor and his dark writing style. I like how twisted the ordinary stories become and how it could be retold in a different manner, like “Gaiman style”. Two of my absolute favorite novels of his is American Gods and The Graveyard Book (I have the one with illustrations from Dave Mckean). His books with the illustrations hold a special place in my heart. I think it’s no secret that he has collaborated with many talented writers, artists and illustrators. So it really feels like a Christmas whenever I buy his books that include illustrations. That’s exactly how it felt when I stumbled upon a copy of Coraline with illustrations by Chris Riddell.
I’ve been seeing Coraline on shelves for quite a long time now but I have always stayed away from it because frankly, it scares the shit out of me. The movie still haunts me until now. I guess because Coraline’s story has always been relatable. Because admit it or not, at some point in your childhood, when you didn’t get your way you wished that you have a different set of parents, one who will allow you to stay up late all you want and eat all the junk food you like and allow you to play outside without any restrictions.
“Because when you’re scared but you still do it anyway, that’s brave.”
Coraline as I felt when I was reading it, is a universal story. It’s ageless and the lessons you learn while reading it resounds so much in your adult life. When you are presented with difficult choices and unavoidable situations you have to learn how to be brave and face the music (as cliché as it sounds). Reminds me of a popular quote “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear.”
Here Coraline faces different challenges in order to reclaim her parents and the house that they live in from the clutches of her evil other mother. She also works on freeing the trapped souls of the other kids who fell into the other mother’s tricks. With the help of a moody black cat, she works her way into solving the mysteries and outsmart the evil other mother.
“Be wise. Be brave. Be tricky.”
Neil Gaiman’s Coraline is a must. I shouldn’t have waited this long to finally pick it up and read it. But as I said earlier, it’s ageless. No matter how old you are, the lessons you’ll get from this book will resonate throughout the rest of your life, whatever stage of it you’re in.
Read: August 12, 2015
The BookNut Verdict: 4 out of 5!