The day after they moved in, Coraline went exploring....
In Coraline's family's new flat are twenty-one windows and fourteen doors. Thirteen of the doors open and close.
The fourteenth is locked, and on the other side is only a brick wall, until the day Coraline unlocks the door to find a passage to another flat in another house just like her own.
Only it's different.
At first, things seem marvelous in the other flat. The food is better. The toy box is filled with wind-up angels that flutter around the bedroom, books whose pictures writhe and crawl and shimmer, little dinosaur skulls that chatter their teeth. But there's another mother, and another father, and they want Coraline to stay with them and be their little girl. They want to change her and never let her go.
Other children are trapped there as well, lost souls behind the mirrors. Coraline is their only hope of rescue. She will have to fight with all her wits and all the tools she can find if she is to save the lost children, her ordinary life, and herself.
Critically acclaimed and award-winning author Neil Gaiman will delight readers with his first novel for all ages.
A note from Neil Gaiman about Coraline
"More then ten years ago I started to write a childrens book. It was for my daughter, Holly, who was five years old. I wanted it to have a girl as a heroine, and I wanted it to be refreshingly creepy. I started to write a story about a girl named Coraline. I thought that the story would be five or ten pages long. The story itself had other plans.... It was a story, I learned when people began to read it, that children experienced as an adventure, but which gave adults nightmares. It's the strangest book I've written, it took the longest time to write, and it's the book I'm proudest of."
Fairy Tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten
-- G.K. Chesterton.
Coraline discovered the door a little while after they moved into the house.
It was a very old house it had an attic under the roof and a cellar under the ground and an overgrown garden with huge old trees in it.
Coraline's family didn't own all of the house, it was too big for that. Instead they owned part of it.
There were other people who lived in the old house.
Miss Spink and Miss Forcible lived in the flat below Coralines, on the ground floor. They were both old and round, and they lived in their flat with a number of ageing highland terriers who had names like Hamish and Andrew and Jock. Once upon a time Miss Spink and Miss Forcible had been actresses, as Miss Spink told Coraline the first time she met her.
"You see, Caroline," Miss Spink said, getting Coraline's name wrong, ...
Gaiman has crafted a superbly creepy and surreal fairy tale which will appeal to robust children from about age 9, and most children aged 11 and up. For younger children, new to the horror genre, the story may seem a little slow at the beginning as there is little tangible 'action' and the subtlety of the building tension might pass them by, but if they make it through the first few chapters they're likely to be hooked! Particularly recommended is the audio version read by Gaiman in a well paced, somewhat sinister voice which is enhanced by music and effects from the Gothic Arches who have also been featured on the audio versions of the Lemony Snicket books 'A Series of Unfortunate Events'.
If you liked Coraline, try these:
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