When people hear that I like Neil Gaiman's work they inevitably ask me if I've seen "Coraline." That always bugs me, shouldn't they be asking me if I've READ "Coraline" and THEN ask if I've seen the movie made from the book? I guess I'm a purist. If the book came before the movie than the book should always come first in my eyes. Well, ladies and gentlemen, the current answer is yes, I've read "Coraline," and no, I have not seen the movie. I'd like to see the movie though! It's now officially been added to my list of things to see at some point.
"Coraline" is the story of a young girl who's family moves into a new flat, and in the process, she discovers she has some um, rather strange neighbors. First of all, she has to deal with everyone trying to call her "Caroline," which is annoying, but I suspect she's dealt with that particular nuisance most of her life. Her downstairs neighbors are couple of spinsters and their dog, and her upstairs neighbor is an old man and his rats that he claims to be training. While they each have their quirks, these are not the strangest neighbors of all.
No, the weirdest neighbors are the one's she discovers when she opens the door in between her flat and the vacant flat that's on the same level as her flat. That's when she meets her alternate family. They look almost exactly like her parents, except they have button eyes, and they don't act the same as her parents.
Coraline soon discovers that these alternate parents are far more sinister than they initially appeared. It's up to her, with a little help from the cat she's befriended, to save her parents, and to rescue the souls of other children these wicked people have lured in. It's a bit of a harrowing story, but fascinating at the same time!