|In The Graveyard Book, Nobody Owens (also known as Bod) is saved from murder by Ghosts. As a toddler, Bod, crawls out of his cot and walks up the hill to The Graveyard in the dead of night. Meanwhile his family are being murdered in their sleep by a man named Jack.
Jack tracks Bod up to The Graveyard. The ghosts save Bod’s life after Mrs Owens makes a promise to the Spector that is Bod’s mother. The ghosts agree to raise Bod and grant him the Freedom of The Graveyard.
Bod is to be raised by ghost surrogate parents Mr & Mrs Owens, with Silas who belongs to neither the world of the living or the world of the dead acting as Bod’s Guardian.
This is the start of a truly remarkable adventure story. Bod is taken through a gravestone that leads to a desert and city of the ghouls, he develops a friendship with a dead Witch and a living girl, he is taught how to fade, he goes to an ordinary school and uses
fear and dreamwalking to deal with bullies, he learns the ways of The Sleer and finally learns the truth of why his living family was murdered, why the man Jack is still after him and has to fight off The Jack’s order.
The Graveyard Book is the most wonderfully imaginative story that I’ve read in a long time. As the plot unravels the reader is captivated throughout and ponders on the mystery of why the man Jack murdered Bod’s family and why he continues to search for Bod to finish the job of wiping out his family.
The characters are superbly surrounded in mystery with hidden talents that make each character brilliant.
The Graveyard Book has made it on to my top shelf – where I keep my favourite books and there is no doubt in my mind that it is a book I will read again and again. It was a book that I honestly didn’t want to ever end.
At the end of the book, in an acknowledgments section Gaiman writes that this book was inspired by Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, that Gaiman read as a child, and also inspired by his own children at a certain age. This inspiration shines through as I found myself thinking that The Graveyard Book reminded me of the story of The Jungle Book, way before getting to the end acknowledgements section.