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Hooray for the "Boo!"

TheGraveyardBook_Hardcover_1218248432.jpg Hey, it's coming up on Halloween and all. Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book is the perfect little sweetly spooky treat (with a moral, natch) for young and old (okay, maybe not too young ... oh heck, it's no scarier than those Harry Potter stories, and who doesn't like a ghost story?).

Go on, indulge your inner YA reader. You won't be disappointed.

Just don't show it to your oh-so-literary novel-writing teacher, or he might say, "Why are you reading children's books? I do not approve."

Harumph.

Back to the sanctioned reading list then. Finished Kate Atkinson's Behind the Scenes at the Museum last week and Jonathan Coe's lyrical The Rain Before it Falls over the weekend. I've now just begun Jane Hamilton's A Map of the World. It was oh-so-pretty for those first few pages and then the poor little girl goes and drowns (or does she?) in the pond.

Oops.

It's one thing for all the neighbors to think you and your family are hippy freaks come to wreak havoc in their idyllic country village but then you go and kill (or maybe just brain damage) the neighbor's two-year-old. Well, there's a story. Remind me never to babysit.

It sucked me in right away. I've not read her before, but she sort of reminds me of Jane Smiley. And that's not a bad thing.