The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman follows the misadventures of Nobody “Bod” Owens as he travels through the world of the living and the dead to solve the mystery of why his family was murdered.

We first meet the toddler Bod as he is being stalked by a cutthroat. Wandering aimlessly, the baby teeters into the Old Town cemetery. There he is given the protection of the graveyard, evading an early death.

Raised and educated by the dead, Bod is a curious and lonely boy. He wants to learn all the secrets of the graveyard, but longs for the outside world. Oftentimes his inquisitiveness finds him either getting or, through no fault of his own, falling into mischief.

Bod always manages to get through, but soon he will be faced with the ultimate test: his family’s slayer.

Gaiman’s novel for young adults is an enjoyable read about self-discovery and adventure, while still managing to emphasize the importance of learning and heeding your elders. Some of the vocabulary might be advanced for a younger audience, as the British author uses language not common in the average American’s lexicon, but overall the story is quite compelling.

The Graveyard Book is available in print and audiobook at the VC/UHV Library. It won the Newbery Medal in 2009.

Review written by Rebecca H.