The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Reading this book was like savoring a perfect slice of luscious dark chocolate cake (like the one I had for my birthday). You didn’t want it to end, but you know it had to. The taste lingered with you after you’ve finished it, and it sort of made you want to re-eat again (yeah, I know this sounded gross, but if you read this book, you’d know what I meant).
This was one of the books that screamed to me when I read the synopsis and looked at the cover, “You must savor me now”. Half of it because the cover reminded me of an eerie nightmare I had stuck in my mind. The other half because the story was just so magical and absurd and dark it sounded so brilliant. Please also note that I’m not a fan of Neil Gaiman (I like some of his work, yes. I think he’s brilliant, yes. But I don’t love everything he does)
The story itself is magical, dark, and beautifully twisted. What if you found out that your world is really not what you thought it looked? That there was another world beneath it all? I love this type of stories, fantasy mixed with reality… and the author would just go all out but everything make sense. Brilliant.
I love how it was told from a distant view of a forty years old, reminiscing on his seven years old self. Sort of makes me wonder how real it all was… and on the other part gave you the impression of it must be real, because children does tell the truth, it’s the adult that doesn’t want to see it.
Would I recommend this? HELL YES! Especially if you’re into darker stories. Especially if you’re a fan of Neil Gaiman. I think now I’m utterly convinced that he’s a storyteller genius. And we’re lucky to have him writing books. Thank you!
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A Certain Slant of Light, by Laura Whitcomb.
I love the story idea of this book. It was told by Helen, a Light, a soul who can’t pass to the next world. Helen had been cleaving hosts, the Quick, for over a hundred year. The story started when she met a Quick teenager who could see her. Never in her Light years any Quick could see her. Later on she found out that the Quick turned out to be a former Light, James, who possessed a human body whose soul had left it. The conflict arises when they fall in love but they can’t exactly touch each other, being in a different state.
I like how she come up with a new definition of Light, which didn’t put it into something that was scary or weird… In another tale, the Light would be ghost or spirit, but ghost and spirit have an emotion attached to them, and Light is neutral.
Also, the book started with one of the best opening sentence I’ve ever read:
Someone was looking at me, a disturbing sensation if you’re dead.
I can feel the story unravels just from the first sentence. I wish I could write something like that ;). I find the storytelling goes on smoothly throughout the pages, making it a book I couldn’t put down. However, I was a bit disappointed near the end, because I felt it was somewhat rushed, as if it was sprinting when it saw the finish line. But maybe it could be also me, disappointed that the book was almost finished.
I think it’s a good book, the story is intriguing and different from what I usually come across. I would recommend it for people who like romance stories with a twist, or stories with more spiritual depth.