A mysterious hitman called “the man Jack” has been trying to murder Bod (short for “Nobody”) since Bod was a baby. The only place where the boy is safe is where he was raised– a graveyard. They say it takes a village to raise a child, but in this case, it’s a village of ghosts who raise Bod in this fascinating, eerie paranormal adventure by Neil Gaiman, entitled The Graveyard Book.
Because he lives in a graveyard with a community of lovable ghosts for adoptive parents, Bod, still a live boy, somehow straddles the worlds of living and dead. He has a mysterious, Grim Reaper-esque guardian, called Silas (am I weird that I found him sexy?), who protects him from the world outside the grave, and provides supplies for Bod’s corporeal needs (food, clothes, etc.). But Bod, now an adolescent, is ready to take on adventures in the living world, and within the tombs of other ghouls, even encountering some demon-like mythological monsters.
Gaiman tries to lighten the dark tone of this story with his playfulness and the likes of affectionate, mothering ghosts, but it’s still creepy. As a grown adult, I made the mistake of reading this “children’s book” alone at night before bed! But don’t get me wrong, it’s very well-written, worth the read, and the macabre tones will be popular with fans of the genre. The end also leaves things open for a sequel, which is exciting!