Denver Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Club

Coraline USA hardcover Coraline (2002)
Dark fantasy / horror, young-adult novella
with illustrations by Dave McKean

2003 Hugo Award Winner
2003 Nebula Award Winner

Harper Collins USA hardcover
162 pages (left)

Bloomsbury Children's Books UK
paperback 192 pages (right)
Coraline UK paperback

From the inside cover of the book:
       The day after they moved in, Coraline went exploring . . . .
       In Coraline's family's new flat are twenty-one windows and fourteen doors.  Thirteen of the doors open and close.  The fourteenth is locked, and on the other side is only a brick wall, until the day Coraline unlocks the door to find a passage to another flat in another house just like her own.
       Only it's different. . . .
       At first, things seem marvelous in the other flat.  The food is better.  The toy box is filled with wind-up angels that flutter around the bedroom, books whose pictures writhe and crawl and shimmer, little dinosaur skulls that chatter their teeth.  But there's another mother, and another father, and they want Coraline to stay with them and be their little girl.  They want to change her and never let her go.
       Other children are trapped there as well, lost souls behind the mirrors.  Coraline is their only hope of rescue.  She will have to fight with all her wits and all the tools she can find if she is to save the lost children, her ordinary life, and herself.

Read for group discussion on January 28, 2004

How we each rated this book
Dan 7 Amy 7.5 stack of books 10   Wow! Don't miss it
8-9  Highly recommended
7    Recommended
5-6  Mild recommendation
3-4  Take your chances
1-2  Below average; skip it
0    Get out the flamethrower!
U    Unfinishable or unreadable
-    Skipped or no rating given
Cheri 7 Barb -
Aaron 6 Cynthia -
Jackie 8 Ron 6
Christine 8 Mitch -

Our book group has also selected the following books by Neil Gaiman:
-- Good Omens (written with Terry Pratchett)  in May 1996
-- Neverwhere  in March 1999
-- Stardust  in February 2000
-- American Gods  in June 2002
-- Anansi Boys   in January 2007
-- Fragile Things   in March 2008

Neil Gaiman (1960-    ) is a writer of graphic novels, fantasy comic books, and fiction. Originally from England, Gaiman now lives in the United States.

1991 World Fantasy Award for Short Story (with Charles Vess) for "A Midsummer Night's Dream"
1999 Mythopoeic Award for Best Adult Novel for Stardust
2000 Bram Stoker Award for graphic novel The Sandman: The Dream Hunters
2002 Hugo Award for Best Novel American Gods
2002 Bram Stoker Award for novel American Gods
2003 Nebula Award for Best Novel American Gods
2003 Hugo Award for Best Novella "Coraline"
2003 Bram Stoker Award for work for younger readers "Coraline"
2004 Nebula Award for Best Novella "Coraline"
2004 Hugo Award for short story "A Study in Emerald"

Neil Gaiman has written the novels Neverwhere (1997), Stardust (1998), American Gods (2001), and Anansi Boys (2005).  Stardust was published in comic form with pictures by Charles Vess.

He wrote with author Terry Pratchett Good Omens, The Nice and Accurate Prophesies of Agnes Nutter (1990), a fantasy novel about the end of the world.

Coraline (2002) is a young adult short novel illustrated by Dave McKean.  InterWorld (with Michael Reaves, 2007) is a young adult novel featuring travel between dimensions.  The Graveyard Book (2008) is a young adult fantasy novel.

For children (reading level ages 4-8) he's written The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish (1998) and The Wolves in the Walls (2003).  Both are illustrated by Dave McKean.

Smoke and Mirrors: Short Fictions and Illusions (1998), Angels and Visitations: A Miscellany (1993), and Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders (2006) are collections.  M is for Magic (2007) is a YA collection.

Gaiman's first graphic novel was Violent Cases: Words and Pictures (illustrated by Dave McKean, 1987). For DC comics in the US he wrote Black Orchid (#1,-#3, 1989).

Gaiman's gained success with the acclaimed Sandman series of dark fantasy graphic novels. Characters include Death, the dark maiden, and Dream. "A Midsummer Night's Dream" (#19, drawn by Charles Vess, 1990) won a World Fantasy Award for best short story.

Sandman graphic novels:
1 - Preludes and Nocturnes (1990)
2 - The Doll's House (1990)
3 - Dream Country (1991)
4 - Season of Mists (1992)
5 - A Game of You (1993)
6 - Fables and Reflections (1993)
7 - Brief Lives (1994)
8 - Worlds' End (1994)
9 - The Kindly Ones (1995)
10 - The Wake (1997)
11 - Endless Nights (2003)
Dust Covers -The Collected Sandman Covers 1989-1997 (1998)
Death: The High Cost of Living (1994)
Death : The Time of Your Life (1997)

The Sandman: The Dream Hunters (1999) is a cross between Japanese fables and Gaiman's Sandman universe. It's lavishly illustrated by Yoshitaka Amano, but it's not a true graphic (i.e., comic book style) novel. This volume grew out of research Gaiman did after accepting to write the English dialog for the US release of the anime film, Princess Mononoke.

Other graphic novels by Gaiman are Signal to Noise (illustrated by Dave McKean, 1992) about a dying movie producer; The Tragical Comedy or the Comical Tragedy of Mr. Punch (1994); The Books of Magic (1993); Spawn: Angela's Hunt (1998); Last Temptation (2001, illustrated by Michael Zulli, inspired by rock legend Alice Cooper); and Harlequin Valentine (2002, illustrated by John Bolton).  Eternals (illustrated by John Romita Jr., 2007) revisits Jack Kirby's Eternals Marvel superhero series.

Day of the Dead: A Babylon 5 scriptbook (1998) is TV media tie-in.

Nonfiction books he's written are Duran Duran (1985), Ghastly Beyond Belief (with Kim Newman 1985), and Don't Panic: The Official Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy Companion (1988).

Our book club's page for Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
Our book club's page for Stardust by Neil Gaiman
Our book club's page for American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Fantastic Reviews: Aaron's book review of Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
Fantastic Reviews: Jackie's book review of Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Neil Gaiman - Wikipedia
The Dreaming - The Neil Gaiman Page
The SF Site: An Interview with Neil Gaiman (Feb. '99)
DangerMedia Innerview Neil Gaiman
January magazine: Interview Neil Gaiman
The Wake Information about Neil Gaiman's Sandman
The SF Site An Interview With Neil Gaiman (Aug. 2000)
Green Man Review: Neil Gaiman, Coraline
Rambles: Neil Gaiman, Coraline
Steven Silver's Reviews - Neil Gaiman: Coraline
Science Fiction Weekly Interview - Neil Gaiman (2004)
Science Fiction Weekly Interview - Neil Gaiman (2001)

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This page was last updated October 19, 2008