Author Topic: Coraline  (Read 1369 times)


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« on: April 08, 2003, 01:47:07 PM »

So, now that I've read it, I'm ready to discuss. Everyone in my class said they absolutely loved it. They were thrilled to pieces, scared to death. I read it at 2 in the morning, all the lights off except the reading lamp, and barely felt a chill up my spine. It was unoriginal, in my opinion, and though the writing was tight, the subject matter wasn't anything I hadn't seen before in a fairly good fantasy/horror book. The writing itself also felt rather trite, especially at the beginning, as Gaiman was talking down to his audience (oh, it's a children's book, I'd better be cute!).

I also felt it was pretty didactic in Coraline's reflections about which world was better, how the other mother was so obviously evil, how the outworldly great food and toys were just so wrong, and playing with rats?!? Um, kind of weird. And then there's how she needed to save her parents--as soon as she picked up the snow globe I knew her parents were in it. Maybe to a 10 year old it wouldn't be as obvious, but the whole thing, excepting maybe being stuck in the wall behind the mirror, which did get to me a bit, seemed too linear and obvious.

The ending, however, when the hand followed her, I must admit was good. I liked her calculation in going out to the well, though it probably freaked me out more because of the imagery I've already got in my head from The Ring.

The descriptions were well-written, and maybe it's just that I've been reading SO many books that it blended in, but if it's so outstanding as everyone says it is, you would think I would have noticed. My classmates are not particular fans of fantasy and don't read nearly as much as I do--many of you read a whole lot more than I do. What did you think of it?
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Re: Coraline
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2003, 11:04:51 PM »
Actually I pretty much share your feelings.  I was expecting a whole lot more from this one, considering the author.  Instead I got something that was trying to be scary and cute at the same time and not really succeeding at either.  If you want something in a similar vein, but better, there is a children's series called "A Series of Unfortunate Events" which is still pretty darkly humorous for adults.  Also, Tom Baker (of Doctor Who fame) is now known for writing several macabre children's books including a nasty little number called "The Boy Who Kicked Pigs."
"If you're going to shoot, then shoot; don't talk!"  -Tuco: The Good, the Bad, & the Ugly