Has it really been four years since the publication of Gaiman's last adult novel, Anansi Boys? On June 18, he'll be breaking that streak with The Ocean at the End of the Lane (Morrow). This new modern fantasy—which, at 192 pages, is more of a novella—tells the story of a man who returns to his native English village to confront the horrifying evil he survived as a boy.
It began for our narrator forty years ago when the family's lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Dark creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: there is primal horror here, and menace unleashed—within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it. His only defense is three women, on a farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duck pond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.
On his blog, Gaiman called the book "an astonishingly personal sort of a novel," and said that it made his Polish translator cry! He's also said that the tour he's doing in support of the novel will be his last US tour ever—so if you ever dreamed of seeing Gaiman read, this summer is your golden moment.
Will you be looking for this one?
p.s. Want to analyze Neil's handwriting? Check out the Meet the Author he did for Anansi Boys.