It is a gripping novel that filled me with awe. I’m really surprised with Gaiman’s talent to turn words into vivid images, building an enchanting world. I’m not really into such kind of books, but this one was a page-turner ! It is a heroic tale about a child’s battle between innocence and dark forces. It mixes childhood ignorance with universe old wisdom. In this magical world, we find all conflicted concepts: kindness and love, cruelty and resentment; we read about our monsters, those which come from the dark inside us.
I read several essays by Gaiman where he talks fondly about reading and its importance for children. Maybe this explains how the hero of the book found refuge in his books. The book shows how creative and imaginative the children are. And the fact that the hero’s name never mentioned makes me understand and -identify?- with him. As if this child inside everyone of us.
Besides the theme of the supernatural, the novel touches upon the theme of wisdom. The book deals largely with questions about life and the universe. In addition, the book tackles the topic of isolation and loneliness and their impact on one’s life. Memory is the most prominent topic in the book. Memories are not reliable, rather they conjure up images of ambiguity. Each one of us will have a different memory of the same event. We can’t know which version is the most accurate. Therefore, in the book we read about this story, but since it’s a memory that could be told by someone differently, we can’t be sure of its accurateness. This is actually what makes me love the story more: That’s it is a children book ( though it is labeled an adult book), and we read this story from an adult perspective, exploring how we as children thought and behaved, how was the world so big to us ( ocean/ bond) and how it was so magical ( did that magic really did happen?)