The Ocean at the end of the lane by Neil Gaiman, Finished reading by 12th November 2013
“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 this 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 woman, one a farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duck pond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang. The Ocean at the end of the lane is a fable that reshapes modern fantasy: moving terrifying and elegiac – as pure as a dream, as delicate as a butterfly’s wing, as dangerous as a knife in the dark – from storytelling genius Neil Gaiman”
This is the first book by Neil Gaiman I have read. But from reviews I gather he is quite well known. The story is about a grayed out memory of a 40 year old man who suddenly recollects it while sitting at the side of a Duck pond. Well blend of fantasy and magic. But I do not think that the story has enough meat to develop into a novel. Its just like ‘butter which is sparingly spread on a loaf of bread’. Nevertheless it’s a good short story with lot of imagination and a good read in this genre.
The smell of the fresh milk, the softness of mashed potato, I loved the description of all such things in the books. It reminds you of something homely and close to your heart. Remember the book, Heidi which we all loved in our childhood just because you could actually smell fresh milk and cream and all the good village things while reading it. This book kind of brought back those feelings. I love the way author paid attention to these trivial joys of life and it just adds to the magic of the whole book. Also the book has a simplicity associated with it in every conversation.
I would love to read more from this author especially in the same genre. I would go with a 3.5 for this book, it’s a quick and gripping read.