Ocean at the end of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
What really surprises me about Gaiman is how he keeps on producing voluminous stuff in such frequency as he does, he is beginning to look like a best-seller churning machine to me now. Also, the class that comes with his books is not to be ignored. He hits it lucky with almost every book I’ve read of him and when I picked up this book, I dived into it already heavy with expectations.
The book started off with a strangely familiar scene where a man drives to a place (Hempstock’s farm) after a funeral, as if in a trance and reminisces about his past sitting beside an ocean (is really just a pond), caught in the snippets of time, he is reeled back into his memories. The start of the book (which I read way back when the book was first released) enticed me to read more and urgently. However, I am a bit disgruntled to declare that the rest of the story that followed did not really sweep me away too far.
The story has Gaiman written all over the place (a bit too Coraline-ish!). It’s full of his usual quirks and crotchets and he really has it all together fairly fine until you’re well into the midriff where it’s stretch. And you can really feel that stretchhhh! (yes, it is a bit of a pulling-you-along-and-releasing sort of a stretch.) And then you’re on the loose into something that is full of meaning and stuff.
The fact that the book is kinda memory house for the author makes it a bit personal to me, since Gaiman is revered by me like every other book geekster. Urrrgghhh.
Well, 3.5 stars from a jadedly surprised Gaiman fan