THE GIRL IN THE LOCKED ROOM, A GHOST STORY, by Mary Downing Hahn, Clarion Books/HMHKids


Ghost story master Mary Downing Hahn unrolls the suspenseful, spine-chilling yarn of a girl imprisoned for more than a century, the terrifying events that put her there, and a friendship that crosses the boundary between past and present.

A family moves into an old, abandoned house. Jules’s parents love the house, but Jules is frightened and feels a sense of foreboding. When she sees a pale face in an upstairs window, though, she can’t stop wondering about the eerie presence on the top floor—in a room with a locked door. Could it be someone who lived in the house a century earlier?

Her fear replaced by fascination, Jules is determined to make contact with the mysterious figure and help unlock the door. Past and present intersect as she and her ghostly friend discover—and change—the fate of the family who lived in the house all those many years ago.

Out September 2018


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

People who love guts, gore and girls climbing out of televisions (or wells) stories, pass on this one.  If you like a well-developed ghost story about a sad child caught in time, then this one is for you.

It’s a middle-grade read, but some adults may appreciate it too. I did.  I should note for the record, I write supernatural thrillers and well, mine although not all guts and gore are far more explicit and jarring. But I too started somewhere and I would have to say, it was with stories like this one–enjoyable, fascinating and somewhat riveting.  For a middle-grade read, this is perfect. Hahn targets her audience perfectly.  It’s also a good introduction to this genre for children who don’t normally read this type of book.

Mary Downing Hahn has been at this for a while now with at least thirty-six novels under her belt, including the best-selling ghost series, “Wait Till Helen Comes,” “Took,” and “One For Sorrow.” So if you’re a fan, then this is another book you shouldn’t miss reading. As a multiple child-voted state award winner, Hahn has a large fan base that keeps growing.

The main character is wonderful and fleshed out (no pun intended) with great skill.  The plot moves along with plenty of twists and turns that go bump in the night. To feel the effects properly, I suggest readers read this book with covers over their heads and a flashlight aimed at its pages. Setting is perfect (creepy old house). Imagery perfect!

Well-written, great entertainment and a lovely perspective of a ghost who isn’t that bad at all.

I gave this book:




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