To avoid foster home care while their mother is recuperating from illness, three children run off to the home of a grandmother they have never seen, where they find a cold reception and a terrible secret.
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Willo Davis Roberts wrote many mystery and suspense novels for children during her long and illustrious career, including The Girl with the Silver Eyes, The View from the Cherry Tree, Twisted Summer, Megan’s Island, Baby-Sitting Is a Dangerous Job, Hostage, Scared Stiff, The Kidnappers, and Caught! Three of her children’s books won Edgar Awards, while others received great reviews and other accolades, including the Sunshine State Young Reader’s Award, the California Young Reader’s Medal, and the Georgia Children’s Book Award.From School Library Journal:
Grade 4-6-- To avoid being sent to separate foster homes while their mother recuperates from a heart attack, Rosie, 10, and her two brothers run away to the grandmother they have never met because of a long-term family rift. They find their grandmother, but she is distinctly unwelcoming, and her house, rather than being a refuge, is as cold as she. Their Uncle George seems friendlier, but there is a third, unseen resident, an obscure face at an upstairs window, a visitor in the night, that both their grandmother and their uncle pretend to ignore. Rosie and the boys now face the triple dilemma of convincing Grandmother to keep them, of wanting to solve the family mystery, and of dealing with their fear of having to live, even briefly, in a house that appears to be haunted. This seems to be the season for Jane Eyre spin-offs, with this novel leaning even more heavily on the Victorian classic than Hila Feil's Blue Moon (Atheneum, 1990). This may be because the age level at which Roberts is aiming is too young to have read the original. But, without giving away the game, the formula is there and will be recognizable to more experienced readers. This being so, the solution of the mystery is a little too predictable. However, Roberts has a real sense of how children view the sometimes puzzling behavior of adults and the ability to depict their reactions believably. Most of the story is seen through the eyes of Rosie, but older Kevin and younger Nathan have distinct personalities as well. Refreshingly, adult characters are not reduced to the stereotypes too often found in contemporary children's novels. The runaway plan and its resolution are realistically developed. Suspense is well maintained, and is just scary enough, making this a good addition to mystery shelves. --Barbara Hutcheson, Greater Victoria Public Library, B.C., Canada
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Atheneum, 1990. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0689315945
Book Description Atheneum, 1990. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110689315945