Julia Bookman; “Kids’ Corner: Pick of the Week”; Atlanta Journal & Constitution; Aug 04, 2002; p.H2.
Curiosity may have killed a cat or two, but for little Coraline it opens the door, literally, into a freaky otherworld of ghoulish blobs and creatures, evil singing rats, a helpful talking black cat and a distorted couple with black-button eyes who claim to be the girl’s “other” parents and are hungry to keep her with them forever. Adult novelist Neil Gaiman (“American Gods”) wrote “Coraline,” a truly original horror story, for his young daughter a decade ago. Children prone to the heebie-jeebies ought to stay away, but those who can take being scared out of their socks will want to read “Coraline” over and over again. At the onset of the story, Coraline’s family has moved into an apartment in an old house. A door in the drawing room appears to open to a brick wall, but one night Coraline unlocks it and enters a world that supernaturally mimics her own. In this bizarre “night-black underground darkness,” Coraline must save her real parents and also three other children, all of whom have been trapped by the “other” mother. Gaiman’s storytelling is brisk and filled with vivid descriptions: “The other mother’s wet-looking black hair drifted around her head, like the tentacles of a creature in the deep ocean.”