Thursday, October 4, 2012
Banned Books Week:Throwback Thursday Edition Coraline by Neil Gaiman
While preparing for Banned Books Week, I was trolling the internet and came across The University of Connecticut's banned books page. In the "youth" tab, they listed Coraline (2002, HarperCollins)as a challenged book. It has been challenged for age appropriateness and is thought to be scary for younger children. I wonder how many of those younger children have seen the movie Coraline. In my house, Coraline is a family favorite. I, for one, had seen the movie but never read the book. I picked up the audiobook version at the library and dug right in. Honestly, compared to Henry Selick's movie interpretation, the book is pretty mild. I would think that seeing Coraline on the big screen would frighten children more than the book.
Coraline is a great character! She is precocious, smart and very brave. The book has an important lesson. Things may seem better on the other side, but you always pay a price. So, you better be careful what you wish for. It is also a great commentary on parents of today who are too caught up in their own lives to realize they aren't paying enough attention to their children. Are there some scary scenes in the book? Yes, probably for some kids they would be scary. I believe it all comes down to parental responsibility and knowing what your child is reading. As well as, knowing what your child can handle at his or her age. I, for one, know my 6YO will love this book. He is a huge fan of the movie.
I am a huge fan of Neil Gaiman. I can't wait to share this book with my kids. My favorite book, by far, from him is Neverwhere. If you haven't read that one, definitely try it out.