The Graveyard Book (illustrated by Chris Riddell)
Written by Neil Gaiman
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The Lovereading4Kids comment
Winner of the Carnegie Medal in 2010 and winner of Best Novel at the Hugo Awards 2009.
2009 winner of the prestigious Newbery Medal. Spooks galore in this brilliant and fantastic story of life in the graveyard. When Baby Bod escapes a murderer intent on killing his whole family, he is taken in by the graveyard ghosts. In eight chapters, each of which depicts every other year of Bod’s life, a separate story of Bod’s life unfolds and always in the background there is the sinister, haunting presence of a killer. Bod’s curious tale is a masterpiece of original, absorbing and unstoppable storytelling.
In January 2009 Neil Gaiman won American's most prestigious children's fiction prize, the Newbery medal, for his novel The Graveyard Book.
27th January 2009 - Gaiman was asleep in bed in Los Angeles this morning when he was phoned by the award's committee and told he had won. 'You are on a speakerphone with at least 14 teachers and librarians and suchlike great, wise and good people, I thought. Do not start swearing like you did when you got the Hugo. This was a wise thing to think because otherwise huge, mighty and four-letter swears were gathering. I mean, that's what they're for,' Gaiman wrote on his blog after the call.
Gaiman's The Graveyard book is the story of Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, who lives in a graveyard and is raised by ghosts. The Newbery, which picks 'the most distinguished American children's book published the previous year', has been criticised in recent weeks for being out of touch with its readers; the choice of Gaiman - a perennial bestseller - as winner, puts paid to claims that the judges favoured books with a limited appeal.
Named in honour of 18th-century British bookseller John Newbery, the award was founded in 1922, with previous winners including children's classics such as Hugh Lofting's The Voyages of Dr Dolittle, Madeline L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time and Lloyd Alexander's The High King.
'I might have imagined all of this, or they may have to do a sudden recount or something,' wrote Gaiman. 'But I think it probably happened. I mean, it's now 7:20am and I'm drinking tea and blinking happily at the world.'
The Graveyard Book (illustrated by Chris Riddell) by Neil Gaiman
When a baby escapes a murderer intent on killing the entire family, who would have thought it would find safety and security in the local graveyard? Brought up by the resident ghosts, ghouls and spectres, Bod has an eccentric childhood learning about life from the dead.
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Bloomsbury Publishing Plc
31st October 2008
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