FICTION

Ghost and Bone

Delacorte. Aug. 2019. 224p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9780525643968.
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Gr 4-8–Oscar has always been different; he walks with a crutch and prefers the dead over the living while working in his family’s funeral home. But once Ghost Law Enforcement officers Sally and Sir Cedric crash into his life via ghost carriage, he realizes just how different he is. Oscar has the ability to turn into a ghost at will and can see the City of Ghosts that living beings cannot. That’s only the beginning as he joins Sally in a fantastical buddy ghost cop story, chasing down a bad guy who wishes to end death forever. Readers may find themselves as confused as Oscar about this weird world in the beginning, but just as eager to catch up, flying through chapters to see what ghastly ghoul is haunting the next corner. In what other world would the slogan “Die Better!” be considered inspirational? The plot moves at a fast pace and is a fun introduction to some light horror, but it’s the world-building and characters that are the stars of the show. Sally is a Victorian ghost in a preteen body, Mr. Mortis (one hopes his first name is Rigor) heads up the Ministry of Ghosts, and if you want to stick around for some unfinished business, you’d better get a Haunting Visa from the Ghost Visas department on the first floor.
VERDICT This fun romp through the City of Ghosts will awe, delight, and creep readers out just a little. A solid purchase

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