I have been meaning to read Neil Gaiman’s latest book The Ocean at the End of the Lane since it came out, but it kept slipping my mind until he Tweeted that it was the perfect book for October, and you know what? He was right (though I think it is the perfect book for any time of year). That is not to say it is overly scary, but it does put the reader in a spooky mood. It is a great book.
The story is about a young boy and his neighbors that claim their duck pond is an ocean. That is all I am going to tell you since half of the fun with Gaiman’s books is finding out where his imagination will take you, and the pond sized ocean is a very small piece of it.
Now this is a small book, and not just in length, but its stakes and scope are small too. Which is a nice change of pace for fantasy readers like myself who are always facing down the end of the world. It is fun just to read a wonderus adventure of a small boy. Plus Gaiman is able to fill his books with such seemingly effortless whimsy. He writes like I wish I could. As you can tell by my poor attempt at a book it must not be effortless.
Gaiman has said that this book fits in the universe he created with Stardust and The Graveyard Book, but I see it fitting in very well with Anansi Boys and American Gods. Though now that I think about it all his books work well together and they create a universe I love to visit.
This is a wonderful book, and I would say that it is a great adventure for all readers above the age of thirteen. Kids younger than that may like it too, but a parent should probably check it out first. If you are older than thirteen you should go get a copy of The Ocean at the End of the Lane now.