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Coraline (pronounced /ˈkɔrəˌlaɪn/[1]) is a fantasy/horror novella by British author Neil Gaiman, published in 2002 by Bloomsbury and Harper Collins. It was awarded the 2003 Hugo Award for Best Novella,[2] the 2003 Nebula Award for Best Novella,[3] and the 2002 Bram Stoker Award for Best Work for Young Readers.[4] It has been compared to Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and has been adapted into a 2009 stop-motion film directed by Henry Selick.



As the tale begins, Coraline Jones and her parents move into an old Queen Anne style house that has been subdivided into four flats. The other tenants include Miss Spink and Miss Forcible, two elderly women retired from the stage, and the Crazy Old Man Upstairs (later, he is revealed to be named Mr. Bobo), who is training a jumping mouse circus.

During a rainy day she discovers a locked door in the drawing room, which has been bricked up. As she goes to visit her neighbors, the Crazy Old Man Upstairs relates to her a message from the mice: do not go through the door. At tea with Miss Spink and Miss Forcible, Miss Spink spies danger in Coraline’s future after reading her tea leaves, and bequeaths to her a seeing stone for protection.

Despite these warnings, Coraline decides to unlock the door when she is home by herself and finds the brick wall behind the door gone. In its place is a long passageway, which leads to a flat identical to the one she just left, inhabited by her Other Mother and Other Father; replicas of her real parents with button eyes. In this “Other World”, Coraline finds everything to be better than her reality: her toy box is filled with animate toys that can move and fly, the Other Miss Spink and Miss Forcible forever perform a cabaret show in their flat. She even finds the mangy Black Cat that wandered around the house in the real world can talk, however she learns he is not of the Other World and has come to warn Coraline of the imminent danger, but Coraline pays it no heed.

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