Ninebelow
ninebelow
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February 2013
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This Year's Reading

#51 Underground by Tobias Hill

You can tell this is a debut novel and you can tell he is a poet (excess of simile) but it is still bloody good (piercingly accurate simile). Extremely confident and ambitious for a writer who was still in his twenties.

I think this means I have read all Hill's fiction apart from his latest one, The Hidden, which must be out in paperback around now. Bring it on.

#52 The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Really enjoyed this. Probably shouldn't have been surprised since I've enoyed all his other work but this got lukewarm notices and I wouldn't have read it if the missus hadn't brought it on holiday. It is no different from any other Gaiman novel - or, indeed, any other children's novel - but it is very nicely done. (Gaiman himself describes this a "work for all ages" but he is deluding himself. The audience will be wide but it is a kid's book.)

And that is fifty two. As a treat, here is a poll:

Prefered illustrations to The Graveyard Book

Chris Riddell
4(44.4%)
Dave McKean
5(55.6%)

Comments

If the audience is everyone then, presumably, it's a book for everyone? Isn't that...tautological?

The audience isn't everyone. Despite what Gaiman says, it is clearly written as a children's book and children are the primary audience. The fact that lots of adults will buy it simply because it is written by Gaiman doesn't change this.

I prefer Riddell's covers, but McKean's interior art is fantastic.