Reviews for Ghost of Crutchfield Hall
Booklist Reviews 2010 October #1
Twelve-year-old book lover Florence is thrilled to be leaving Miss Medleycoate's Home for Orphan Girls to live at Crutchfield Hall with her newly discovered great-aunt, great-uncle, and cousin James. Six months before, James' sister, Sophia, died in an accident, and Florence quickly discovers that Sophia's ghost is haunting Crutchfield to punish James for his part in her death. Sophia is full of malice and pride, and as she grows in strength, Florence fears for James' safety, yet she feels powerless to resist Sophia's control. As in every ghost story, readers must suspend disbelief to avoid being tripped up by the inexplicable (most notably, Sophia's ability to touch others and control their actions), but this short tale is a good choice for reluctant readers, especially girls. Just as she did in The Old Willis Place (2004) and countless others, Hahn once again creates a brooding atmosphere and a powerful, chilling ghost in a gothic mystery that explores family, the love of reading, and the dangers of revenge. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2011 Spring
Florence, at first happy to leave the orphanage, soon senses that Something Is Not Right in Crutchfield Hall. This truly scary period tale is both rousing historical fiction and ghost story. The ghost is classic Hahn--a mean little girl made meaner in death--while Florence is the kind of heroine for whom readers will stick around to be sure things turn out all right. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2010 #5
Florence is happy to leave the orphanage for the home of a newly found great-uncle, but she isn't long inside Crutchfield Hall when she senses that Something Is Not Right. Hahn, the author of ghost stories as well as rousing historical fiction, here combines the genres for a truly scary period tale. The setting is a country estate in late Victorian England, the weather distinctly Brontean, and the ghost is classic Hahn: a mean little girl made only meaner by her accidental death. When said ghost, Sophia, says through her grave-stained teeth to Florence, "I need a friend, and so do you. We could be like sisters, sharing secrets," readers will want to run -- but Florence is the kind of vulnerable, relatable heroine who will make them stick around to be sure things turn out all right for her. They do, if only just, in an ending that is satisfying but touched with uncertainty: is Sophia truly at peace? Brrr! roger Sutton Copyright 2010 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.
Kirkus Reviews 2010 July #2
Ever since her parents drowned in a boating accident when she was five, 12-year-old Florence has led a wretched life at Miss Medleycoate's Home for Orphan Girls in London. Now she has moved to Crutchfield Hall, her great-uncle's country estate, and surely life will be better there. But when she meets Great-Aunt Eugenie, every bit as sour as Great-Uncle Thomas is kind, Florence isn't so sure, especially when she meets up with the ghost of her cousin Sophia, who died the year before and who blames her passing on her brother James. Sophia is out for revenge, and Florence finds herself becoming a pawn in her evil game. Set in 1884, the tale has all of the trappings of a superb ghost story: the bitter relative, the invalid, the mysterious groundskeeper, a sprawling gothic mansion with lots of drafty old rooms, a likable protagonist and, of course, a ghost. Hahn is a master of the supernatural tale, and her legions of fans will revel in this chilling volume, reminiscent of Dickens and Poe. (Gothic fiction. 9-12) Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
School Library Journal Reviews 2010 August
Gr 4-6--Hahn hearkens back to the Gothic horror novels of the 19th century with her latest ghost story. Crutchfield Hall is a gloomy old place, but after spending seven years in Miss Medleycoate's dour orphanage, 12-year-old Florence can only assume her new life there will be an improvement. In addition to her genial great-uncle, the manor's residents consist of Florence's severe great-aunt, Eugenie; her invalid cousin, James; and a few servants. The accidental death of James's older sister, Sophia, is believed to have triggered his current indisposition. Sophia's ghost continues to haunt Crutchfield Hall both figuratively and, as Florence soon discovers, literally. Far from the angelic creature idolized by Eugenie, Sophia proves to be spiteful, manipulative, and determined to avenge her death. While Hahn's literary references (including Dickens and the Brönte sisters) will likely go over the heads of the target age group, most kids will be too absorbed in the chilling atmosphere of the tale and Sophia's terrifying influence on the living world to care. A deliciously spine-tingling tale that even the most reluctant readers will enjoy.--Christi Esterle, Parker Library, CO [Page 101]. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.