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Publisher's Summary

In Coraline's family's new flat are twenty-one windows and fourteen doors. Thirteen of the doors open and close. The fourteenth is locked, and on the other side is only a brick wall, until the day Coraline unlocks the door to find a passage to another flat in another house just like her own.

Only it's different...

At first, things seem marvelous in the other flat. The food is better. The toy box is filled with wind-up angels that flutter around the bedroom. But there's another mother, and another father, and they want Coraline to stay with them and be their little girl. They want to change her and never let her go.

Other children are trapped there as well, lost souls behind the mirrors. Coraline is their only hope of rescue. She will have to fight with all her wits if she is to save the lost children, her ordinary life, and herself.

©2002 Neil Gaiman (P)2002 HarperCollinsPublishers, Inc.

What the critics say

  • Book Sense Book of the Year Award Finalist, Children's Literature, 2003
  • Hugo Award Winner, Best Novella, 2003
  • Nebula Award Winner, Best Novella, 2003

"An electrifyingly creepy tale likely to haunt young readers for many moons." (Publishers Weekly)
"The story is odd, strange, even slightly bizarre, but kids will hang on every word...and they will love being frightened out of their shoes. This is just right for all those requests for a scary book." (School Library Journal)
"A magnificently creepy story...for stouthearted kids who love a brush with the sinister, Coraline is spot on." (Kirkus Reviews)

What listeners say about Coraline

Average Customer Ratings
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Always loved the Coraline story

I've always been a huge fan of the Coraline story and have seen the movie multiple times. I thought it was time I read the original book. I especially enjoyed the fact it was narrated by the original author.

2 people found this helpful

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An experience I'll probably never forget.

I definitely was not expecting of how much I would enjoy this experience I just lived. I already got the opportunity to read and experience Coraline's journey to save her parents and herself in two adaptations, the movie and the comic book (which is more faithful to the original text), and I guess I still can't get bored of reading, or in that case, listening to this wonderful, dark and fantatic story that Neil Gaiman put out to the word. I am a immigrant new to Canada coming from Brazil, and even tho I consider my english to be at least pretty decent, I still struggle sometimes to understand what some folks say to me, so I knew I needed to train my listening skills. And because I recently watched Neil Gaiman's MasterClass, I was craving to experience more of his stories, so it was just perfect when I found this app and realized how many of Neil's works are in here! With it, I was able to realize both my wishes! I picked Coraline to be the first book to listen because I was a little afraid to ruin the experience of a story that I never read with my not so great english listening skill, but now that I finished, I just realized how much I was able to understand! Sure, I still don't understand 100%, so I do need more practice, but still it was such a amazing and relaxing time I had while I listened to this! I was so lucky for the 3 days that I casually listened to the story to be just slightly rainy and foggy, which fits so perfectly with the feel of the book in a way that I was able to just keep myself completely immersed in the story no matter where I was and what I was doing! And what I can tell about Neil's perfect, warm and magical narration of his own work? It still feels like a dream to have the author himself to read you his book, almost like if he was telling a bed story for you before you feel sleep in a deep dream. I know it sounds weird and exaggerated (after all it's just a 4h long audio I just downloaded) but this is the best I can describe the feelling of listening to this audiobook! And when I finished it, I just couldn't help myself but to keep a big smile on my face for a long time, just like Coraline while listening to the sounds and music of the mice circus on the end of the summer... Now this becomes a great memory that I will keep close to my heart forever and that I'll probably never forget.

1 person found this helpful

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I liked it. It's just like the movie.

I enjoyed it. I can't wait to read/listen to more of Neil Gaiman books. I love that he is reading his books. He has a great voice and does a beautiful job.

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I loved it!

It was fun listening to the author tell his story. I finished it in one listen.

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amAzinG!

a amazing story narrated and written by Neil gaiman, and the narration was also amazing!

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Another Great Escape

Neil Gaiman is an extraordinary storyteller. I decided to listen to Coraline because my daughter had just read it and wanted to talk about the story. It is a story for all ages. It’s suspenseful, quirky, funny, creepy, thoughtful, unpredictable and charming. It was a great escape. Neil Gaiman is an amazing author and narrator. He does fantastic voices which really help you get into the story. Can’t wait for my next Gaiman story!

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great book

fun to listen to. wonderful book . enjoyed listening to highly recommend it . .

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Love this Book!

This book was so enjoyable to listen to. There is something so special listening to the author read his own story, because you know you are getting the story as it was intended. Neil Gaiman narrated it so well and had the perfect amount of expression and enunciation. This book his heartwarming and spooky at the same time and I highly recommend.

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love it

my daughter loves listening to this story as much as I do. narrator was smooth and clear.

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A Better Book for a Younger Demographic

Good book, slow performance. Listen at 1.25x for the best listen. The book itself is great for youngsters getting into a horror/psuedo-horror genre. Neil Gaiman definitely has better books but this one is a fine addition to his repertoire.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Melise
  • 2008-03-19

Scary, but interesting for both adults and kids

My family listened to this book on the way back from vacation. The group consisted of my mother (62), myself (42) and my two sons (9 and 11). This story, as is typical of Neil Gaiman, was atmospheric, lyrical and always imaginative. My mother, who can be a talker, didn't interrupt the story even once. But, the story, which is about a girl's parents who are kidnapped by a fairy tale type character and replaced with strange reproductions, is pretty dark, and scary enough that my 9 year old asked if we could turn it off for a while at one point. Of course, the next time we got into the car, he wanted to hear the rest, so although frightening, it is still an involving story. So, if you have a particularly sensitive child, I would be careful with this book, but otherwise, I highly recommend it.

67 people found this helpful

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  • AudioAddict
  • 2014-09-19

Kiind of like a sinister Alice in Wonderland

STORY (creepy) - This is a very dark story about an alternate world on the other side of a door in Coraline's home. When young Coraline (probably age 10ish) discovers the door and passes through, she meets twisted versions of her parents and neighbors, talking rats, a talking cat and other strange creatures. She becomes involved in a dangerous life-and-death game of strategy against her "Other Mother" and, in particular, one of her detachable hands. Coraline is smart and resourceful for a young girl her age and manages to come up with a pretty clever way to win the game, save the day and eliminate the threat of the villainous hand!

I thought the story was unique and somewhat interesting, but I can't help wonder what Gaimon's target audience actually was meant to be. As an adult listener, I thought it was fairly juvenile but, on the other hand, I think it would be too dark or intense for many children.

PERFORMANCE - Gaimon himself reads this work, and he does a good job. Not so sure that the weird songs added anything, but they were kind of creepy.

OVERALL - As stated above, I question what age group Gaimon wrote this book for, but maybe girls around 10-12 years old would find it enjoyable, perhaps even as a Halloween listen. No adult situations or language, but quite a bit of creepy characters and events, the type that can cause bad dreams...

12 people found this helpful

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  • Steven Casper
  • 2008-06-18

Creepy Fun

I love a story that doesn't take a month to get to the point. And a thriller that gets to it is even better.

If I'm going to be creeped out, I need to really care about the character, so generally a book needs to spend some time introducing you and explaining why you like the protagonist. It's easier to do that if the protagonist is a child. Young enough that you can immediately like them and want them to win, but old enough that they aren't completely helpless (making their victory unbelievable). Gaiman has done this, and done it well.

Coraline is a nice girl. Too bad about creepy reflections of her parents that want to adopt her now that her real parents have gone missing.

The audio is fantastic. The singing rats were creepy. I loved the song that opened the reading. Kind of wished there was more to it.

22 people found this helpful

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  • Jim "The Impatient"
  • 2017-01-21

A DEAD SPIDER THE SIZE OF A SMALL CAT

I'M YOUR OTHER MOTHER
I agree with audible addict, I question the age for this story and performance. This will cause nightmares in younger children. Once you get past that, this is a great scary, adventure story. A dark Narnia and Alice in Wonderland. Listen by yourself before sharing with younger ones, but don't ignore it, it is very entertaining.

64 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Annette
  • 2007-09-20

Very Entertaining

I purchased this book for a weekend car trip with my teenagers and was worried that this book would be too childish for them. There was no need to worry. This book is quirky enough to draw kids and adults.

After Harry Potter, it is hard to find characters and worlds and books that are fun. This book gives me hope that there are many fine gems out there waiting to be found.

We did not find this book as scarey as some of the reviewers warned about. The book was strange without being too scarey.

8 people found this helpful

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  • APersonWhoBuysStuff
  • 2020-03-13

THE. BEST. SCARY TALE FOR ALL AGES!

Coraline TERRIFIED me when I was little and borrowing it from the library (because the cover was so cool!) and I had nightmares for weeks but TOTALLY WORTH IT!!! As an adult, it still sends chills up my spine, especially with Neil Gaiman's unmatched performance of his wholly unique horror thriller children's book the likes of which I haven't come across before or since! ELEVEN STARS!!

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Debra Tydd
  • 2005-05-04

So good I read it first!

I bought this book for my 13 year old daughter, and decided to read it first so that I could make sure it wasn't too scary, and so that we could talk about it. Even though I was on vacation, I couldn't put it down. Wonderfully spooky and evocative -- and delightfully scary (but not too scary). Now I have the audiobook for my daughter, and other kids in the family. By the way, she really liked it too!

7 people found this helpful

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  • Erik Bontreger
  • 2017-11-08

Should've read the book first

I LOVE the story. But, I saw the movie first and to be honest, I liked it better. Only because the movie really fleshed out the scenes and dialogue. Listening to this made it seem like I was listening to a basic bullet-point script of what I'd seen in the film... I would've enjoyed it much more had I read first, then watched.
But all in all, the writing is simple but engrossing. Gaiman truly is a genius

2 people found this helpful

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  • K. Duderstadt
  • 2006-10-18

So Creepy!

Thank goodness for the British and their love of scaring the pants off of little kids. This book is CREEPY. It's very odd, as well. People compare it to "Alice in Wonderland" with good reason. The imagery is just as vivid, and the language just as good. However, I found Coraline to be much more disturbing. The things that happen about two hours in are disturbing enough to me as a 26 year old woman that I would strongly hesitate to give it to any child under 10, and that only for children who have never been afraid of the dark, or of rats...

8 people found this helpful

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  • William Thompson
  • 2012-01-31

Coraline, A Best Listen

Although coraline is not one of my favourite Neil Gaiman books, this recording by the author is a must listen. Coraline is Gaiman???s rather dark and edgy reworking of the Alice story. Moving into a new flat with her workaholic parents, coraline discovers a door in the parlour that opens onto a brick wall. While her parents are out one afternoon, Coraline opens the door to find another flat on the other side of the door. The world she discovers is like her own but different in a way that is both dark and disturbing. Button-eyed versions of the people she knows live beyond the door and her other mother and other father care for Coraline in a way that her real parents do not. Unlike Alice who finds herself in a dream-world full of nonsense and silly characters, coraline becomes trapped in a nightmare full of grotesque creatures from which she must escape.
This book is full of disturbing images that is unlike Gaiman???s other works for young people. However, Gaiman himself reads the book, and his clean, measured performance brings it to life in an unforgettable way. I tend not to like audio books read by the author, but this one is the exception. Four stars for the book, and five stars for Gaiman???s narration.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Maja
  • 2020-10-31

J'adore I Love IT

Un bon passe temps en travaillant sur mes devoirs 😅 L'histoire est perturbante flipante, bien plus que le livre mais qu'est ce que c'est bien