As a children’s librarian, I like to read the new award winners. So when “The Graveyard Book” by Neil Gaiman was announced as the Newbery Award winner for 2009, I was curious to read it, since I’d read his “Coraline”. (which was made into a film in 2009).
Set in modern day Britain, “The Graveyard Book” begins with the murder of a toddler’s parents and sister by a methodical killer. Strong stuff for a children’s book, for certain. The baby manages to escape, and wanders into a graveyard, where he is taken in by a loving couple named the Owenses, who have no children. They are ghosts, and long dead, as are the other inhabitants of the graveyard who help to raise the child over the years. It turns out that Bod (short for “Nobody”) was the killer Jack’s real target, and Jack is still out there, searching.
For older children grades 5 and up, or tween readers, this is an suspense and action filled story with ghosts, ghouls, and hints of vampires.
The Graveyard Book