Amazing story that lent itself to all kinds of questions that make you hope he does a second book. The characters were so real that you hated to see this wonderful story come to an end. The reading of this book is awesome! He does such a wonderful job with all the voices, each different and very distinct. The story moves at a easy pace, lots of action in places, building of storyline and filling in was done perfect.
We LOVED this book! This was one of those books that you do not want to see end. Listened to the last CD on our way into NYC on Saturday and I had to pull over because I was crying.
The characters are wonderful - even Bod, who starts out as a cipher, is developed to the point where you can understand his motives and predict his actions. I will never forget character such as Miss Lupescou, Mother Slaughter, Abenazer Bolger, Liza Hempstock and the ghouls (loved those ghouls!!) The plotting is so well done - events build on each other, and the two year intervals are a great way to show Bod's increasing maturity without hitting the reader over the head with it.
If at all possible, try to listen to this book. Neal Gaiman does such a terrific job.
I did have two questions/comments: SPOILER ALERT - sort of - (1) Why didn't Bod look for, and then visit, the graveyard that his family was buried in? The book establishes the fect that he can speak with the departed in other graveyards. It would seem to me that, rather than an outing for pizza, Bod would like to have met his birth parents while he still had the ability to communicate withthem directly. (2) I would have liked to have the author explain that Bod intended to buy a plot in the graveyard in which he grew up so that he would some day return and spend eternity with his childhood friends, and dance the Macabre someday with them again. But these are petty issues.
Wow! What an introduction to Mr. Gaiman's works. An excellent story and so well-read by author. Multiple voices without ever sounding hokey. The music by Bela Fleck will stay with you and lends to the tone of book. I so enjoyed and recommend it for all ages....Coraline is next.