Saturday, August 31, 2013

You don't pass or fail at being a person, dear.

I Love Neil Gaiman. 
His new book, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, made me love him even more.

When I finished this book, I had to turn around and read it again. I loved it that much... and I was that curious about what I had just read.

For me, Ocean is a very spiritual book. The three Hempstock women became a trinity of sorts for me. Without giving too much away, Lettie Hempstock pays the ultimate price without actually paying. The Ocean/Duck Pond was such a beautiful symbol. For me it was all knowledge - everything - and yet infinitely nothing.  You should really read this book.

If you love Neil Gaiman too, these are things that go without saying: Magic exists. The Universe is Magic. And it is true whether or not you and I can understand it. Magic doesn't need to explain itself. It's Magic. To those new to Mr. Gaiman, just accept that the world is not what it seems... and then begin reading. You'll be glad you did.

Be sure, once you are past chapter four, to listen to Neil Gaiman on SLATE Radio

Also, listen to Neil Gaiman and Ocean at the End of the Lane on NPR HERE.

This would be a great book to read together with your teenager, if you have one.

I have so many quotes from the book highlighted, but here are a few of my favorites:

It all came back and even as it came back I knew it would not be for long: all the things I remembered, sitting on the green bench beside the little pond that Lettie Hempstock had once convinced me was an ocean.

Adults follow paths. Children explore. Adults are content to walk the same way, hundreds of times, or thousands; perhaps it never occurs to adults to step off the paths, to creep beneath rhododendrons, to find the spaces between fences.

Nobody actually looks like what they really are on the inside. You don't. I don't. People are much more complicated than that. It's true of everybody.

Monsters come in all shapes and sizes. Some of them are things people are scared of. Some of them are things that look like things people used to be scared of a long time ago. Sometimes monsters are things people should be scared of, but they aren't. 

I'm going to tell you something important. Grown-ups don't look like grown-ups on the inside either. Outside, they're big and thoughtless and they always know what they're doing. Inside, they look just like they always have. Like they did when they were your age. The truth is, there aren't any grown-ups. Not one, in the whole wide world.

You don't pass or fail at being a person, dear. 

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