Thursday, June 20, 2013

Guest Review: The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

The Ocean at the End of the Lane
by Neil Gaiman
Hardcover, 181 pages
Publication: June 18th 2013 by William Morrow Books
Source: from Harper Collins for honest review

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It began for our narrator forty years ago when the family lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Dark creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: there is primal horror here, and menace unleashed - within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it. His only defense is three women, on a farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duckpond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.


Neil Gaiman's newest novel, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, is the tale of an unnamed protagonist's memories of a childhood that occurred in a fantastic rural English setting. The portrayal of the childhood injustices that we have all endured, both small and grievous, is once again skillfully and honestly described by Gaiman. His stories always remind me vividly of how it felt as an adolescent, and that when we were growing up, the good and bad moments of our childhood were neither good nor bad, they just were. The bath scene is an excellent example of this; as a father, it was also the most terrifying moment of the book.

The one negative I have about the book is its' length. At 181 pages, it was the perfect length to be frustrating. So short that I wanted more and slightly longer than a good short story. At the end I was left nettled, trying to decide which bothered me more!

All in all, I would recommend this book at 4/5 stars.

About the author

Neil Gaiman's work has been honoured with many awards internationally, including the Newbery and Carnegie Medals. His books and stories have also been honoured with 4 Hugos, 2 Nebulas, 1 World Fantasy Award, 4 Bram Stoker Awards, 6 Locus Awards, 2 British SF Awards, 1 British Fantasy Award, 3 Geffens, 1 International Horror Guild Award and 2 Mythopoeic Awards.

About the reviewer

Dentaldamn has been an avid reader from an early age. He's favorite authors include Neil Gaiman, Stephanie King, Terry Pratchett and J.K Rowling. When he's not reading you can find him playing World of Warcraft or watching The Walking Dead (and no he is not a 40 year old virgin living in his mom's basement.... he's my husband).


  1. I completely agree with this review, even though I really liked this book the length felt weird and wrong. It was not a novella and it was not a novel, but something in between.

  2. I just finished this book and agree with the review too.


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