Friday, April 20, 2018

Spring Reading 2018 Ghost Friends Forever: My Heart Lies in the 90s

Gr 4–6—Fifteen-year-old Sophia Greene-Campos's parents divorced last year. Now she lives with her dad, while her brother Felix lives with their mom. Felix didn't take the divorce well, and his best friend Jake broke up with Sophia at the same time. However, Sophia is determined to carry on with the family business of paranormal investigations. When she encounters Whitney, a ghost who needs help moving on, she decides to tackle the case on her own. But her attempts to solve it are complicated by her crush on Whitney. The story keeps readers busy working out the double mystery of why Sophia's parents divorced and what caused the other girl's death. A few surprises near the end will have readers hoping for a sequel. Illustrations are done in rich colors, with flashbacks set off by a more subdued palette, and swirls of purple indicating when spells are cast. Although the characters have different skin tones and hair colors, they all look fairly similar in age—even the parents and teachers seem more like college kids than thirtysomethings. VERDICT A mix of mystery and romance, perfect for middle grade readers who enjoy urban fantasy.

This review was first published in the February 2018 issue of School Library Journal, p.88.

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