[[quoteright:334:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/The_Graveyard_Book_8526.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:334:It's Literature/TheJungleBook, [[RecycledInSpace IN A GRAVEYARD!]]]]
''[[WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.]]''

When a young boy's family is killed, he takes refuge in a graveyard. The dead there take him in, and dub him Nobody Owens (although his friends call him Bod). There, taken care of by a vampire, a werewolf and his adoptive (but dead) parents, Bod learns from the dead all the things he needs to know about life. But the world outside of the graveyard where he is sheltered is not a safe place. The people who killed his family are still out there, and they are searching for him. {{Badass}} ensues.

Think of a {{goth}}ic [[Literature/TheJungleBook Jungle Book]]. Written by NeilGaiman and published in 2008. Illustrated by DaveMcKean in the US edition and [[Literature/TheEdgeChronicles Chris Riddell]] in the UK.

NeilGaiman has won a swag of awards, including the HugoAward and both the NewberyMedal and the CarnegieMedal.

A movie is, as of 2012, in pre-production over at {{Disney}}. [[TheNightmareBeforeChristmas Henry]] [[WesternAnimation/{{Coraline}} Selick]] was originally attached, but they gave him the boot and Creator/RonHoward has been suggested.

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!!''The Graveyard Book'' contains examples of:

* AncientConspiracy: [[spoiler:The Jacks of All Trades]] are a good example of this.
** And possibly [[spoiler:the Honour Guard]].
* ArcWords: "Sleep, my little babby-oh..." [[spoiler: Mrs. Owens only remembers the last part of the song as [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming she's saying goodbye to Bod forever]].]]
* [[BitchInSheepsClothing Bastard In Sheep's Clothing]]: [[spoiler: Mr. Frost, who moves in and pretends to be a nice lonely bachelor to Scarlet and her mother, is actually the Jack who murdered Bod's family years before and is once again out to get him.]]
** Notable in that he's used his magic to completely create this persona: while he wears it it's apparently genuine, but he removes it after he recognizes Bod and thereafter it's gone.
* BecauseDestinySaysSo: In the Graveyard Book, Bod is being pursued by the [[spoiler: Jacks of All Trades]] because [[spoiler: one of their people predicted around four thousand years ago that a child would be born who would destroy their organization.]]
* [[spoiler:BittersweetEnding]]
* ChameleonCamouflage: Being raised by ghosts, Bod does it very well.
* CrapsaccharineWorld: The world of ghouls.
* CrazyPrepared: Mrs Lupescu makes Bod learn (among other things) how to shout for help in every language of the world and some from beyond (for example, in Night Gaunt). Naturally, [[ChekhovsSkill this comes in handy.]]
* DarkIsNotEvil: The ghosts are as kind as the living. [[spoiler: The vampire, werewolf, ifrit, mummy,and witch ghost are also nicer than they sound.]]
** The snakelike guardian, however, [[AmbiguousInnocence is much worse.]]
* TheDeadCanDance: They dance the Danse Macabre. (And never, ever talk about it, before or afterwards.)
* DeadpanSnarker: A few characters, especially Silas.
* DontFearTheReaper: The Lady on the Grey. She actually tells the dead to take care of Bod.
* DownerBeginning: The book starts with the murder of Bod's family.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: [[spoiler:The Jacks of All Trades is an organization of men from a variety of trades that are all named Jack. Who happen to practice some form of necromancy.]]
** The book itself is an example of this. It's a book. About a graveyard.
* {{Expy}}: From Literature/TheJungleBook, of course. There are probably even more than the ones that are listed.
** Mowgli: Nobody Owens.
** Mother and Father Wolf: The Owens
** Bagheera: Silas
** Baloo: Miss Lupescu
** Shere Khan: Jack
*** The Dholes: [[spoiler: The Jacks of All Trades]]
** The White Cobra: The Sleer
** Bandar-Log: Ghoul-folk
** Chil the Kite: Night-Gaunt
** Hathi: Elizabeth Hempstock
** Akela: The Lady on the Grey
* FateWorseThanDeath: It's a Neil Gaiman story. Stand by for some horror, including: Becoming a ghoul. Getting trapped in mirrors for eternity. Getting buried in the earth by [[spoiler:the Sleer]], and possibly the fate of the creatures that were sacrificed to make the Sleer. [[WhoWantsToLiveForever Being Silas.]]
* GainaxEnding
* GenocideBackfire
* GrayEyes: Bod's grey eyes are mentioned a few times, probably as a physical manifestation of his place between the white and black of life and death.
* TheGrimReaper: The Lady on the Grey is the Gaimanian form of Death (though she's probably not [[ComicBook/TheSandman that]] form of Death).
* HeelFaceTurn: Silas apparently did one when he was younger.
* ImNotAfraidOfYou: The Indigo Man is just an illusion, and once the children realize that, he disappears.
* InNameOnly: The ghouls who bear the names of famous public figures aren't really them; as they later reveal that ghouls' names are given to them after they become ghouls.
** To clarify, they are named after their first meal, and prefer to pick noteworthy dinners.
* KingInTheMountain
* MeaningfulName
* MonsterMash: The team that takes on [[spoiler:the Jacks of All Trades]] include Silas ([[spoiler: a vampire]]), a werewolf, an ifrit, a winged Sumerian mummy, and a good-luck pig.
* {{Necromancer}}: The Jacks can work magic, powered by death. Their powers are vaguely defined but include greatly enhanced senses (such as smell), magically barring and unbarring thresholds, creating personae for themselves [[ConsummateLiar so that they don't need to act when impersonating someone]], and setting magical traps which can bind someone into a set of mirrors.
* NightmareFuelStationAttendant: Bod himself, both to the reader and in-story.
* TheNondescript: "that Owens boy..." (Bod using his powers to Fade)
* NotUsingTheZWord: Or, in this case, the V word, as Silas is never explicitly called [[spoiler: a vampire]] in the text.
* OnlyAFleshWound: When Bod's "father" ([[spoiler:Silas]]) is hit by a car.
* OurGhoulsAreCreepier: Bod has a run-in with some in "The Hounds of God." Among other disturbing quirks, they take their names after the main course of their first meal, including "The Famous Writer Creator/VictorHugo" and "The [[UsefulNotes/HarryTruman 33rd]] [[OurPresidentsAreDifferent President of the United States]]." There is a ghoul-gate in every graveyard. Don't go near it.
* OurPresidentsAreDifferent: The character named [[OurGhoulsAreCreepier The 33rd President of the United States]] is definitely not UsefulNotes/HarryTruman.
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent: For one thing, they're called the Hounds of God. They will hunt to the edge of Hell and beyond to protect their charge, or destroy a creature of evil.
** Actually based on Slavic werewolves, apparently. ([[spoiler:Miss Lupescu's]] name is [[MeaningfulName a clear hint,]] and her cooking is also a tip for the culturally savvy.)
* PaperKeyRetrievalTrick: How Bod escapes the antique shop.
* PoliceAreUseless: Played with a little bit.
* PuppyLove: Averted. Scarlett and Bod's relationship initially seems like a set-up for this trope, but ultimately their relationship is close but platonic, even as they grow older.
* [[RecycledInSpace Recycled IN A GRAVEYARD!]]
* RedOniBlueOni: Bod is the RedOni to everyone in the graveyard by virtue of being young and alive, and thus impulsive and inquisitive. But compared to everyone in the world of the living, he is very much a BlueOni, quiet, bookish and muted to the point of invisibility, especially compared to Scarlett (whose very name 'Scarlett Amber' suggests someone warm and vibrant).
* RelationshipResetButton: Bod and Scarlett, in a platonic sense.
* SelfFulfillingProphecy: If [[spoiler:the Jacks of All Trades hadn't tried killing Bod's family, he'd never have had the means or even a reason to fight them. The Honour Guard only discovered that they existed when they tried killing a family that lived near a graveyard with one of its members in it.]]
* ShoutOut: The Night-gaunts are one to the CthulhuMythos. However these Night-gaunts are friendly, and will help you to escape from the Ghouls.
* StrayingBaby: How Bod escapes the attack on his family.
* {{Sugar and Ice Personality}}: Silas.
* TalkingInYourDreams: One of Bod's powers is to be able to enter people's dreams and converse with them.
* TallDarkAndSnarky: Silas.
* TimeSkip: Most chapters take place a few months to a few years after the previous.
* UltimateEvil[=/=]TheVoice: "We are the Sleer..."
* WalkingTheEarth: Silas, though for most of Bod's childhood he hangs around the graveyard.
* WerewolfThemeNaming: Ms. Lupescu.
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Although the Sleer make several reappearances, we never do find out who their original master was...or indeed anything about him at all, except that he was alive so long ago that the plain where his treasures were buried has since become a hill.
* WhoIsThisGuyAgain: Bod in school. See below.
* WholePlotReference: The book as a whole is heavily inspired by ''Literature/TheJungleBook'', but some of the chapters deserve special mention:
** [[spoiler: Kaa's Hunting/The Hounds of God]]: A young boy, feeling frustrated at the no-nonsense attitude of his mentor, attempts to escape his predicament by joining a seemingly fun-loving band of mischievous creatures. He discovers that these creatures don't have intentions as innocent as they made out and ends up in far over his head. In a fit of desperation he calls to a flying creature for help in a language his mentor taught him shortly before his capture. A large and fearsome animal heeds his call for aid, and its appearance strikes terror into the hearts of his would-be captors. They abandon the boy to the mercies of his rescuer.
** [[spoiler: Mowgli's Brothers/How Nobody Came to the Graveyard]]: A cruel and sadistic villain murders an entire family, but their infant son eludes his grasp. He is discovered and protected by a charitable [[RaisedByNatives native couple]], but their peers urge them to give up the child because he belongs to a group outside of their social order. They are all eventually persuaded to adopt the child when swayed by the urgings of their leader and a [[DarkIsNotEvil shadowy predator]] living on their outskirts.
** [[spoiler: The King's Ankus/The Witch's Headstone]]: A boy journeys into an ancient and forgotten ruin underneath the earth, where he encounters a serpent as old as the ruin itself. The serpent is entrusted in guarding the priceless treasures that lie beneath the ground, and although initially intimidating, the serpent turns out to be insane and rather pitiful. The boy, against the serpent's wishes, robs the tomb of a treasure only to find out that the treasure is [[MaybeMagicMaybeMundane cursed in a way that makes it act as a catalyst for human greed]]. The boy is immune to its charms, but other men end up killing each other in order to possess the forbidden prize, and the boy ends up returning the item back to its original place to the smug satisfaction of the serpent.
* YouCanSeeMe: Bod's signature move when in school is to be unnoticed and forgotten, at least until he starts to get involved with the other students. This also happens whenever a living character who can see the supernatural meets the Sleer.

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