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The Graveyard Book Review

By Brynne Adamson

Book: The Graveyard Book

Author: Neil Gaiman

Published: 2008

Book summary: “Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a perfectly normal boy. Well, he would be perfectly normal if he didn’t live in a graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor the world of the dead. But it is in the land of the living that real danger lurks, for it is there that the man Jack lives and he has already killed Bod’s family” from

Rating: 4/5 stars

What this book did well

Neil Gaiman does an excellent job of creating a world that is unique and fun to read about. The story takes place in a graveyard full of ghosts, and readers get to see new pieces of the graveyard and its inhabitants every chapter. The atmosphere is fitting, too. This makes the story memorable and immersive.

The characters in this story, especially the main character’s guardian, Silas, feel real and (ironically) alive. They pop out on the page, and one can’t help but want to know more about them and see them interact. Each of them has their own personality and motives, although sometimes that can get a little confusing since there are so many of them.

What could be improved

This book could have elaborated on certain subjects to make the story more interesting, such as some of the roles the graveyard dwellers had, the deeper motives of the main villain, Nobody’s adoption story, etc. While these subjects are touched upon, more information about them could have told us more about the characters and world Nobody lived in.

A specific example of this is when the graveyard dwellers do a dance between the living and the dead — this didn’t really seem to have much of an impact on the story, so an explanation could’ve helped readers understand why it was included.

Who should read this book

This book is an excellent read for elementary students and older. Children will enjoy the ghostly world of “The Graveyard Book” and all the characters who interact with Nobody.

Nobody’s adopted family also does a great job of showing what a healthy household looks and acts like. They show their care for Nobody while having elements of contention and mishaps that real families have. To learn more about adoption and its benefits, one can visit the Adoption Choices of Texas website.

More book reviews by Brynne:

Adoption Book Review: Heidi

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