the freedom of the graveyard

i just finished “the graveyard book” by neil gaiman. it’s a children’s book but the very interesting story line (think harry porter) made me bring this book home from borders.

a baby grew up in the graveyard because someone out there wanted to kill him. in other words, he was raised up by ghosts, the inhabitants of the graveyard.

how cool is that?

we always thought graveyards were creepy, a place where dangers lurk. yet, it was this boy’s home until he was 15. brought up by a ghostly couple, protected by a ghostly guardian, received lessons from dead people from across many generations, ran from ghouls and took revenge on the man who killed his family by exploiting the wonders and spells of the graveyard. it’s a truly fascinating world.

a relatively simple read although i found the beginning of the booka little draggy. i like the comparison between the living and dead – especially when the boy’s guardian explained to him how he can’t just settle and spend all his life at the graveyard because the inhabitants has already lived their lives and dreamt their dreams unlike him who has infinite potential ahead of him, a life waiting for him to live.

lessons told from the eyes of the dead can be quite revelational.

especially love the ending when his ghostly mother sang to him when he was leaving the graveyard to experience life: –

“sleep my little babby-oh
sleep until you waken
when you wake you’ll see the world
if i’m not mistaken….

you’re not (mistaken) and i shall

kiss a lover
dance a measure
find your name
and buried treasure

face your life
its pain, it’s pleasure
leave no path untaken.”

utterly inspiring.

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