Thumbs up for The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman. Fantasy.
One of my friends gave me a signed copy of this the week it came out as an early-early-early-early Christmukkah present. (Do I have the best friends, or what?) I love Gaiman, but I do not love everything he writes without exception, so I tried to keep my hopes from getting out of control. Well, I shouldn’t have worried, because Ocean is spectacular – scary and bittersweet and beautiful and in fact rather devastating. I read it in one marathon sitting and then wandered around in a fog until I went to bed. If you like beautiful things, you should read this; but make sure you have some hours free, because once you start, you won’t stop.
I have dreamed of that song, of the strange words to that simple rhyme-song, and on several occasions I have understood what she was saying, in my dreams. In those dreams I spoke that language too, the first language, and I had dominion over the nature of all that was real. In my dream, it was the tongue of what is, and anything spoken in it becomes real, because nothing said in that language can be a lie. It is the most basic building brick of everything. In my dreams I have used that language to heal the sick and to fly; once I dreamed I kept a perfect little bed-and-breakfast by the seaside, and to everyone who came to stay with me I woud say, in that tongue, “Be whole,” and they would become whole, not be broken people, not any longer, because I had spoken the language of shaping.
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