Grabenstein, Chris The Black Heart Crypt, 326 pgs.
Random House New York, 2011. $16.99.
Language: PG; Violence: PG; Mature Content: PG
Zack Jennings can see ghosts. It’s a talent that runs in his family. With Halloween approaching the veil between the living and the dead thins bringing Zach face to face with a nasty ghost clan bent on revenge. Jack-o-lanterns and trick-or-treating lose priority as Zach fights to protect his family, friends, and town. Halloween has never seemed so sinister.
This story is a fun romp that will please fans of supernatural literature. The characters are well written and likeable. Themes of love, loss, and acceptance are explored with tidy lessons learned. The good old fashioned battle between good and evil could get a bit intense for younger readers. Any fear or discomfort, however, is tempered by the overall tone of the book, which leaves little doubt that good will, in fact, triumph.
EL, MS — ADVISABLE. AEB Social Studies Teacher