I feel the story is sinister. This makes me wondering that whether ‘Coraline’ should be a kid’s novel. Overall, the language of the book is simple, but makes a kids’ book scary such as the other side of the mirror, the other mother who has buttons for eyes, etc. Those characters make the story creepy that may have negative impacts on children. “The other world” is like a horrible dream that can make kids wake up during the night.
Coraline has similar characteristics to Alice, they are both curious, brave and determined girls who enter an alternate world. I think Coraline looks more like a real explorer, and her caution and skepticism make readers of all ages feel nervous in Coraline’s adventure. At some point, I think Coraline behaves beyond and different from a stereotyped girl character that we normally see, who is easy to get scared and takes less courage than a boy. Coraline’s courage reflects the other interesting side of a female’s bravery once confronting horrific events. In another word, there is no definite boundary between a girl and a boy’s character.
In general, even though “Coraline” is harsh for children to read especially at young ages. However, some qualities that the novel has can also fit in children’s literature well. Compare with other novels that we have read so far, Colraline is a girl who is also bored with the situation she currently stays. She does not feel happy to her real parents because they always ignore her. Throughout exploring, discovering a door to a weird world, she meets the other mother, who treats her well, satisfies her desires, but also tries to lock her freedom. The novel leaves meaningful lessons to educate children through Coraline’s adventure in “the other world”. In the first chapter of the novel: “Can I go into the drawing room?” The drawing room was where the Jones’s kept the expensive (and uncomfortable) furniture Coraline’s grandmother had left them when she died. Coraline wasn’t allowed in there. Nobody went in there. It was only for best”. This passage foreshadows that Coraline will enter the “other” world. The drawing room is a place that Coraline feels curious and wants to enter, which is similar to Alice’s desire to enter the garden. I think this fits a real child’s psychology because whenever something do not belong to or forbidden to children, they always feel more desirable to figure out what is going on in there.
As a child, Coraline’s complaints to her real world reflect in reality there are so many children do not understand their parents’ love because parents are so busy with work, children always want parents to spend most of the time with them. Whenever children do not feel fully satisfied about their life. They want to escape the real world to another alternate universe, or try to seek a better position to situate. But sometimes, it is not easy to obtain everything we want, and our complaints and dissatisfaction may cause worse consequences. After going through all the hardships, children actually can learn lessons from real experiences, and notice that we can not change everything in the world, what we can do is try our best to fit in, love and appreciate what we have in the little world that we currently stay in, and build a stronger character in oneself and become a mature adult.