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Extended Audio Sample The Ocean at the End of the Lane: A Novel Audiobook, by Neil Gaiman Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Neil Gaiman Narrator: Neil Gaiman Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2013 ISBN: 9780062255686
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Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. He is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl named Lettie Hempstock. He hasn’t thought of Lettie in decades, and yet sitting by the pond (a pond that she’d claimed was an ocean), the unremembered past comes flooding back. Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touch paper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what. 

A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. A stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly’s wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.

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Quotes & Awards

  • ‘Spooky, beautiful, and magical, Ocean will stay with listeners for a long time. AudioFile Magazine on THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE
  • “An evocative, lyrical fantasy by a master of the craft.”

    Barnes & Noble, editorial review

  • “In Gaiman’s latest romp through otherworldly adventure, a young boy discovers a neighboring family’s supernatural secret. Soon his innocence is tested by ancient, magical forces, and he learns the power of true friendship. The result is a captivating read, equal parts sweet, sad, and spooky.”


  • “Gaiman is especially accomplished in navigating the cruel, uncertain dreamscape of childhood…His mind is a dark, fathomless ocean, and every time I sink into it, this world fades, replaced by one far more terrible and beautiful in which I will happily drown.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “[This] marks the return of one of the fantastic mythmakers of our time…Gaiman is a magpie, a maker of collages, creating something new and original out of the bits and pieces of his wide reading of myth and folklore…The Ocean at the End of the Lane is a small thing with much joy and heartache, sacrifice and friendship, beautifully crafted and as lonesome as the ocean.”

    Washington Post

  • “Wry and freaky and finally sad…This is how Gaiman works his charms…He crafts his stories with one eye on the old world, on Irish folktales and Robin Hood and Camelot, and the other on particle physics and dark matter.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • “His prose is simple but poetic, his world strange but utterly believable—if he was South American we would call this magic realism rather than fantasy.”

    Times (London)

  • “Poignant and heartbreaking, eloquent and frightening, impeccably rendered, it’s a fable that reminds us how our lives are shaped by childhood experiences, what we gain from them and the price we pay.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Gaiman has crafted a fresh story of magic, humanity, loyalty, and memories ‘waiting at the edges of things,’ where lost innocence can still be restored as long as someone is willing to bear the cost.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “A slim and magical feat of meaningful storytelling genius.”

    Library Journal

  • “Gaiman mines mythological typology—the three-fold goddess, the water of life (the pond, actually an ocean)—and his own childhood milieu to build the cosmology and theater of a story he tells more gracefully than any he’s told since Stardust...[A] lovely yarn.”


  • An AudioFile Editors’ Pick, June 2013
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • Selected for the July 2013 Indie Next List
  • A Publishers Weekly Bestseller
  • A Washington Post Bestseller
  • A #1 Los Angeles Times Bestseller
  • An Amazon Top 100 Book of 2013
  • A 2013 New York Times Editor’s Choice
  • A Wall Street Journal Bestseller
  • An NPR Bestseller
  • A San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller
  • A 2013 Booklist Editors’ Choice for Young Adult Books
  • A BookPage Best Book of 2013
  • Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books, Best Fiction 2013
  • Winner of the 2013 GoodReads Readers’ Choice Awards
  • Winner of the 2013 Specsavers National Book Award
  • A 2013 Time Magazine Best Book for Fiction
  • Winner of the 2014 Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel
  • A 2014 Mythopoeic Award Finalist
  • A 2013 Nebula Award Nominee for Best Novel
  • A 2014 Audie Award Finalist for Fiction
  • A 2014 Audie Award Finalist for Author's Narration
  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award
  • A Barnes & Noble Best Book, June 2013
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About the Author
Author Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman has long been one of the top writers in modern comics, and he has also penned many books for readers of all ages, including American Gods, Anansi Boys, Coraline, and M Is for Magic. He is listed in the Dictionary of Literary Biography as one of the top ten living postmodern writers, and is a prolific creator of works of prose, poetry, film, journalism, comics, song lyrics, and drama. He has written multiple New York Times bestselling books and is a Hugo, Nebula, Bram Stoker, SFX, and Locus Award-winner. He has also worked in support of First Amendment rights and was awarded the Defender of Liberty Award in August 1997 by the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund for his efforts. Born and raised in England, Neil now lives near Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has somehow reached his fifties and tends to always need a haircut.