The Hunt for the Seventh

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9780060728229: The Hunt for the Seventh

A haunted mansion.
Six dead children.
A garden of statues.

With every step he takes around the carefully manicured grounds of Minerva Hall, Jim is haunted by the ghosts of children, long dead, whom no one else can see. Urging him to "find the Seventh," the children leave him cryptic clues pointing to a devastating ancient prophecy that only he can stop from being fulfilled.

Jim befriends another boy—Einstein, who lives at the Hall. Einstein is autistic and very, very smart. If anyone can help Jim find the Seventh, perhaps he can—Einstein clearly knows more than he is saying. At the same time, the dead children seem to be leaving Jim some sort of macabre treasure trail.

If Jim doesn't figure out the clues, innocent people will die. But how can Jim find the answers while the dangers of the Hall grow ever more threatening? And even if he can, the real question is—is Jim already too late?

Linking ancient rites with modern mystery, Christine Morton-Shaw has crafted an eerie thriller that will keep readers guessing until its startling conclusion.

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About the Author:

Christine Morton-Shaw has felt "visited" all her life. She often has to sidestep people she then realizes others can't see at all. Sometimes these impressions or visions can take a sudden step closer: "It is as if the skin between this world and another world begins to get thinner. Things in that other place become clearer and louder. I'm quite happy with all this strangeness and charm, and can't imagine life without it."

She feels at home in ruined buildings or medieval houses and streets. Ancient scripts and old manuscripts and diaries seem alive to her. Some of the things in The Hunt for the Seventh have happened to her, particularly the gray glimpses and the whispers.

Christine Morton-Shaw lives with her family in Sheffield, England. She is the author of The Riddles of Epsilon and many picture books for children.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 6–9—"Find the Seventh." That whispered phrase haunts Jim in this eerie mystery of death, ghosts, family secrets, and ancient rites and prophecy. Jim has moved with his father and sister Sal to Minerva Hall, a vast estate of lush gardens with more than 100 statues. It is occupied by grumpy Lord Louis Minerva III, a disagreeable man who restricts areas of the Hall and grounds and closely monitors them with closed-circuit televisions. Curious about his new home, where his father has taken a position as Head Gardener, Jim begins to explore. As he does, he meets a mysterious boy he calls Einstein, who speaks to him in riddles. The ghostly whispers and encounters with Einstein send Jim on a quest to discover the estate's secrets. He finds an old schoolroom, and listed on the board are the names of the Minerva children, each followed by "deceased." At the bottom it reads, "Follow the Statues." And as Jim uncovers clues, he is haunted by the ghosts of the children and sees the details of their deaths, and he knows that he must pursue the trail to prevent some further tragedy. Morton-Shaw skillfully weaves ancient lore into a gripping mystery. The fine plotting keeps readers turning the pages as suspense builds to the surprising end. Genre fans will likely enjoy this hunt.— Jennifer D. Montgomery, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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