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Neil Gaiman wins Newbery Medal

Neil Gaiman (Sandman, Anansi Boys) has won the John Newbery medal, one of the most prestigious awards for children’s literature in the U.S.

Mr. Gaiman, 48, won for The Graveyard Book, a story about a boy who is raised in a cemetery by ghosts after his family is killed in the opening pages of the novel. In announcing the winner of what is widely considered the most prestigious honor in children’s literature, the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, cited Mr. Gaiman’s work for its delicious mix of murder, fantasy, humor and human longing, noting its magical, haunting prose.

Gaiman says idea for The Graveyard Book was inspired, in part, by Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book — though the main characters in the novel are of the supernatural variety: vampires, witches, and werewolves (oh, my).