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Neil Gaiman "The Ocean At The End of the Lane"

Discussion in 'Sci-Fi, Fantasy, & Horror Books' started by Meadow337, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    Any one read it yet? I got a copy earlier this week in a massive splurge of 'I need new books' and its on my TBR list.


    I will be reporting back when I get to it.
     
  2. Ronny

    Ronny Well-Known Member

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    Currently Reading:
    Dark Places - Gillian Flynn
    I
    I have read it, I am a long time fan of Gaiman so I got it as soon as it came out. I may have gotten too excited, it didn't hit the spot like I had hoped it would.

    Don't get me wrong I didn't dislike it and would never discourage someone from it, it just was not quite as adult as I was hoping. It actually reminded me much of his books for the younger audience like, Coraline & the Graveyard Book, both of which I liked. I was just hoping to get back to a, Neverwhere or American Gods, feel :)

    I look forward to seeing what you think.
     
  3. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    I'll bump it up my TBR list then. I only have about 40 or so pages left in my current book. So I'll probably get to it tomorrow.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2013
  4. Ronny

    Ronny Well-Known Member

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    Currently Reading:
    Dark Places - Gillian Flynn
    It is a pretty quick read :)
     
  5. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    hmm I'm a couple of pages in this am. My 40 pages turned into less than 20 because of author notes type stuff at the end. But I can't say I'm finding it a 'quick' read. There is quite a lot of subtle stuff going on below the surface.
     
  6. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    Ok so I did finish it this am. I found it up to his usual standard (if not length but then he does say it started life as a short story and grew - as stories are wont to do if you don't keep a firm grip on them) and enjoyed it.

    I felt it described the sense of a childhood lived half in books and fantasy and half in reality really well, although why that childhood always has to consist of the not-quite-real-perhaps-more-real-than-real slimy scary monsters that inhabit your nightmares I have no idea. There is also as much wonder in childhood that he only touched on very briefly and very insufficiently I thought.
    So my only criticism would be more wonder, less horror otherwise fantastic.
     
    Ronny likes this.
  7. Ronny

    Ronny Well-Known Member

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    I agree with "more wonder, less horror" as I said before I did like the story, specially the parts with the Hempstocks. I wanted to know so much more about the 3 Hempstock neighbors :)
     
  8. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    Either he needed to be more disciplined with the story and keep it as a short story, or he needed to let it go and become a full length novel. As it stands its just a little insufficient, there is more that wants / needs to be written.
     
    Ronny likes this.
  9. Ronny

    Ronny Well-Known Member

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    Maybe he will make a bit of a sequel/tie in novel, as American Gods and Anasi Boys were?
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
  10. sparkchaser

    sparkchaser Administrator and Stuntman Staff Member

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    IMO, his writing has gone downhill since he's been with Amanda Palmer.
     
  11. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    My estimation of him went down since he discovered Twitter.
     
  12. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    I found this really funny somehow. :D

    I bought OatEotL yesterday, and I dug into it just now. Not far yet, but I find that it's a pretty well written one so far. I had several *I need to finish this bloody chapter* moments, so all is well so far.

    He's usually very careful about what he reveals about characters in his books, and I kinda like that about him. He went the entire The Graveyard Book without ever mentioning
    that Silas was a [LAST_CHANCE!]vampire[/LAST_CHANCE!]
    , although it was bloody (oops) obvious, but it didn't come immediately. So him not mentioning the Hempstocks isn't very shocking to me (although I haven't finished it yet!!!!), so we'll have to guess who they are in this thread, given the evidences he's already put into the narrative.

    Edit: btw, I have to mention the very very handsome volume of this book that i bought - it's the HarperCollins international edition paperback, where the edges of the pages are intentionally cut ragged, and the cover has a grainy texture that feels oh so nice to the touch. I love this (physical) book. I'm caressing it right now.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2013
  13. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    ooh kind of like an old book where you had to cut the pages yourself and they came out a bit uneven... we miss so much in these days of instant perfection.
     
  14. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    You cut the pages of the old books yourself??? Are you a Hempstock?
     
  15. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    Noooo lol but I'm not ignorant LOL I just think it was kind of cool to get your book and have to cut the pages before you could read it and the texture of the paper etc.
     
  16. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    Just finished it. Wonderful. About memories (something that I'm thinking about recently), and growing up... A lot of things to love, this book (cover and rough-cut pages notwithstanding). Made me think of my own childhood, but nothing quite so scenic, what with concrete everywhere and dusty shophouses and busy roads and porridges and overpowering car fresheners.

    I was actually saving the book for, well, for a time when I cannot turn on my Kindle. But I accidentally dipped into a couple of pages. Now I don't have anything to read later.

    The scene with the father and the bathtub made me a little angrier than I had expected. Nothing elicited quite so strongly a reaction from me from his other books, but this one made me sit up.

    While it wasn't horribly adult, I don't think the book was really that YA either. The same way that The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time wasn't really a children's book, I think.

    Overall, I totally enjoyed the book, and would recommend it.

    p.s. I just saw that I screwed up the spoiler tag in an earlier post. Shit. Let me fix it. Sorry for those who went 'dammit!'. :D

    Edit: Uh. There isn't a spoiler tag anymore. Hmm.
     
  17. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    Yeah spoiler tags don't seem to be supported any more. This isn't the only forum I've seen them not work.
     
  18. BookGyrlinMO

    BookGyrlinMO Member

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    Currently Reading:
    The Ocean at the End of the Lane
    Haven't read it yet but is on my TBR. It will be my first Gaiman.
     
  19. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    oh gosh you are in for a treat !
     
  20. blackbeard

    blackbeard Member

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    Currently Reading:
    Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson
    (May contain spoilers)
    This books is too big for its shell, maybe it's because of Mr. Gaiman's overall versatility. The ending gave a great hint of what was real and if the reality was a mirage of the fantasy. Made me think how the kiddie mind works if it's too hard to grasp. The complexity of dealing with situation transformed themselves gradually.
    Omit all the fantasy element from it. Then use the metaphor of ocean in that context. It was not really an ocean, either the plot was fantasy; in an absolute sense it's more like real life.
     

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