My name is Ardis and I am an avid reader and budding writer. I want to share my love of books with others. I work with kids and am interested in finding and creating books that will ignite the reader in everyone. Contact me at: ardis.atkins@gmail.com

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Sunday, October 11, 2015

Book Review: Coraline

Synopsis (from GoodReads):

Coraline's often wondered what's behind the locked door in the drawing room. It reveals only a brick wall when she finally opens it, but when she tries again later, a passageway mysteriously appears. Coraline is surprised to find a flat decorated exactly like her own, but strangely different. And when she finds her "other" parents in this alternate world, they are much more interesting despite their creepy black button eyes. When they make it clear, however, that they want to make her theirs forever, Coraline begins a nightmarish game to rescue her real parents and three children imprisoned in a mirror. With only a bored-through stone and an aloof cat to help, Coraline confronts this harrowing task of escaping these monstrous creatures.


Seeing the movie, Coraline, I was well aware of the story.  A little girl, ignored by her parents, finds a door to an alternate reality.  There, she meets her "other mother", a creature who mostly looks like Coraline's mother, but is more attentive, more loving.  Oh, and she has big black buttons for eyes!  At first, Coraline is just happy to be loved by the "other mother".  She craves the attention that she doesn't feel she is getting at home.  I have often wondered what author Neil Gaiman was trying to say with this story.  Is he saying children should be content to have the parents they have, that parents aren't perfect.  Or is he trying to show how vulnerable kids can be.  Adults who exploit children often target kids who are neglected, showering them with attention.  This is often referred to as "grooming".  After the child has put their trust in the grown-up, then abuse can occur.  It seems to me that Coraline is fending off a predator.  Or I could be reading way more into the story...

Regardless, this is a very imaginative and creepy book.  I love the atmosphere of the "other" reality.  Everything is just a little off in this universe.  Senses are heightened, food is too perfect.  One of the most fun aspects in this world is the talking cat.  The cat seems to be able to travel between both worlds, but can only talk in the "other" world.  There is a long exchange between Coraline and the cat about names:

Cats don't need names... We know who we are.

As a cat lover, I felt the personality of the cat was spot on!

Coraline is a quick, fun read; perfect for October.

Source: Public Library
Format:  Paperback
Recommendation: If you like spooky stories, you will love it!
Will I read more from this author:  Yes!
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  1. Great review. I read this book earlier this year and really liked it. The cat was my favorite character.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

  2. I watched the movie and really loved it. I didn't know if I should read the book, but you make it sound really nice, I might have to get it then! Thanks for sharing!! :D

    Lipstick and Mocha


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