Author: Mary Downing Hahn
Book Obtained: From publisher for honest review
“Folks say Old Auntie takes a girl and keeps her fifty years—then lets her go and takes another one.” Thirteen-year-old Daniel Anderson doesn’t believe Brody Mason’s crazy stories about the ghost witch who lives up on Brewster’s Hill with Bloody Bones, her man-eating razorback hog. He figures Brody’s probably just trying to scare him since he’s the new kid . . . a “stuck-up snot” from Connecticut. But Daniel’s seven-year-old sister Erica has become more and more withdrawn, talking to her lookalike doll. When she disappears into the woods one day, he knows something is terribly wrong. Did the witch strike? Has Erica been “took”?
Mary Downing Hahn has always been a favorite of the students I teacher. 5th-8th graders love her books. IF they like scary books - they they want to read her!Wait Till Helen Comes is one they always talk about. So when I saw that she had this new book out I knew I needed to read it. Now fair warning - if you get even the littlest creeped out by a book, this one may not be for you. I mean look at the cover alone! Scary books can scare me, but I still love them!
How was the creep factor? Good! I could see this book keeping my middle school students up at night. For one thing Erica has this doll "Little Erica". That doll plays different roles in the book, and some make you not want to have a doll in your room! I found the doll more creepy than Auntie and Bloody Bones! Auntie, to me, was more mean that creepy. Also much the book is trampling through the woods in the dark. I grew up where there were no woods - the the wood tend to scare me. Add darkness to that, and the tension was really high during those scenes!
Over all story? Good. I liked how the whole story rounded out. It had a great ending that left me feeling good! Which was fantastic after so much tension!
Would I recommend it? YES! First I would ask my middle schooler is they liked creepy books. If they said no I'd find something else. But if they said yes I would give this to them right away!
Best stick-with-you image? That doll at the end!