|Pages/Publication Date:||272 / 2014|
When a middle aged man returns to the lane in Sussex where he grew up, the unremembered past comes flooding back to him. It was here, when he was seven, that he met a remarkable girl named Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and her grandmother, all living in a ramshackle farm with a pond at the end of the road. Something dark and terrible happened then, and Lettie, wise beyond her years, promised to protect him, no matter what. Neil Gaiman had intended to write a short story for his wife Amanda Palmer, off recording an album in Australia; what came out was his first adult novel since Anansi Boys. It is both a fantasy of supernatural forces in the everyday world and an elegiac vision of what we gain (and give up) in the magical time of childhood—but because it is from Neil Gaiman, winner of multiple Hugo, Nebula, Newbery, and Carnegie Awards, it is also about much more than that.
"Gaiman mines mythological typology—the three-fold goddess, the water of life (the pond, actually an ocean)—and his own childhood milieu to build the cosmology and theater of a story he tells more gracefully than any he's told since Stardust."—Booklist (starred review)
"[Gaiman's] mind is a dark fathomless ocean, and every time I sink into it, this world fades, replaced by one far more terrible and beautiful in which I will happily drown."—NYTBR