As a librarian, when students ask for a scary book, I usually show them a book with just enough suspense to get them interested and tell them that if it’s too creepy, close the book and bring it back. I really don’t want to cause nightmares, but I also know that some readers love a little creepy in their stories. So, I try to walk the line. Keep the readers reading and the parents from calling. The Ghost’s Grave, written in 2011, was written far enough back to qualify as a Flashback Friday book and is just right for kids that want something a tinge suspenseful to read around Halloween.
Josh’s parents travel overseas for work and leave him with his eccentric-to-say-the-least Aunt Ethel for the summer. To compound his agony, his aunt has no electronics, including television, and Carbon City, where he’s been transplanted, is a boring old mining town. He ends up entertaining himself by hanging out in what’s reported to be a haunted tree house near the cemetery. Josh gets more excitement than he bargains for when he is contacted by the ghost of Willie, a miner with a macabre request . Willie wants Josh to dig up a small, unkept grave with his arm bone in it. Josh is to retrieve the bone and then bury it with the rest of him in the graveyard. Josh complies and, in the process, discovers a box of stolen cash. Suddenly, a once-dull summer is now filled with supernatural events and a dangerous crime with Josh set right in the middle. Readers may be late for dinner as they can’t stop turning the page to discover Josh’s next move.
For fans like me, The Ghost’s Grave is yet another of the talented Peg Kehret’s yarns. As usual, she spins a don’t-miss tale woven with strong characters and rounded out with humor.
Written by Peg Kehret
Accelerated Reader, Level 5
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