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CORALINE (Graphic Novel)

Author: Neil Gaiman

Illustrator: P. Craig Russell, adapted by

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Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers,

Material: hard cover

Summary: Coraline and her parents just moved into a very old house. It was too large for a single family to maintain so they rented out sections of the house. Two spinster actresses and their dogs lived in the flat below Coraline. An elderly gentleman, who was organizing a mouse circus, occupied the flat above them. There is also a ghost family who looks like Coraline’s parents. The ghost family is trying lure Coraline to live with them in another part of the house. Will Coraline realize what’s happening in time to free herself? or will the ghost family entrap her forever? This is a verbatim transformation of the classic novel into a graphic novel.

Type of Reading: independent reading, remedial reader, reluctant reader

Recommended Age: read together: 8 to 12; read yourself: 9 and up

Interest Level: 8 and up

Reading Level: 3.6

Age of Child: Read by a student at Denbigh High School (Newport News, VA) as part of our Use Your ABCs program. Also read by the Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™

Young Reader Reaction: Denbigh student: I picked this book because the front cover made it look fun to read. I liked the whole book; it was interesting and fun to read. I knew from the first chapter it was going to be good. I would buy this book to share with my friends, family, and other people I care about. I want them to read it because it is interesting.
BTSYA reader: This comic was something I have never read before, as it was very creative and the illustrations were just beyond amazing. The way the author captured the story with graphics is just mind-blowing. Coraline was a great story and I would definitely recommend this comic to all of my friends who like to read. I may have finished this comic very quickly and kind of wish that it could have been drawn out to be longer, but it was very interesting and well-targeted to teens and middle school aged kids. If I have the chance, I will definitely read it again.

Adult Reader Reaction: The author's and illustrator's collaboration on this project has produced an extraordinary and enjoyable piece of literature. They have been recognized for their work on other graphic novels, and this is likely to follow on that path, as well. The author expertly engages the reader with believable characters and an intriguing plot; the visual images help to pull the reader further into the story.

Pros: Coraline is an imaginative and entertaining work of art.

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Buy!Coraline is one of those books that gets read over and over again. If you want a book that to keep kids hooked on reading, this should be on your list.


Educational Themes: This is a book for recreational reading. In graphic novel form, it will entice even the most reluctant reader.

Notes: The Reading Tub, Inc. read an advance reader edition of this book.
Flesch Kincaid reading level 2.0

Literary Categories: Fiction - fantasy, graphic novel, ghost story, family, middle grade

Date(s) Reviewed: October 2008

Other Reviews: See Critics Reviews and reader feedback at and


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