4 of 5 stars ****
The story is a flooding flashback of earlier times an adult has when he returns to the neighborhood in which he grew up. These memories emerge around a tragic suicide that release negative, unknown energy into the location in which it occurs.
The foreshadow of suppressed dark, fearful threats challenge the young boy who needs the comfort and reassurance of a remarkable little girl, Lettie Hempstock. She guides him through crossed boundaries he has yet to imagine.
The marvelous imagination of Neil Gaiman displays in The Ocean at the End of the Lane, a novel that starts, originally, as a short story. Fantasy abounds in the boyhood roots of this author as a pond becomes an ocean and characters are full of magic. The rules of the universe become tools of fiction with extraordinary twists that stretch one's interpretation during this glorious adventure where even time is questionable.