Spooky Selections for Middle Grade Readers

mgspook1Do you have a middle grade reader that lovers anything spooky? This age group often loves to be scared, but not terrified, by their scary stories. Finding books that make parents and readers happy is sometimes hard, but here are some books that might just hit the mark.

Wait Till Helen Comes by Mary Downing Hahn
Unhappy about moving into a converted church in the country with her mother and new stepfather, Molly must put aside her dislike of her little stepsister, Heather, when the child is possessed by a malevolent ghost.

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaimanmgspooky3
Raised since he was a baby by ghosts, werewolves, and other residents of the cemetery in which he has always resided, Bod wonders how he will manage to survive amongst the living with only the lessons he has learned from the dead.

Doll Bones by Holly Black
Zach, Alice, and Poppy, friends from a Pennsylvania middle school who have long enjoyed acting out imaginary adventures with dolls and action figures, embark on a real-life quest to Ohio to bury a doll made from the ashes of a dead girl.mgspooky4

A Tale Dark & Grimm (A Tale Dark & Grimm, #1) by Adam Gidwitz
Follows Hansel and Gretel as they walk out of their own story and into eight more tales, encountering witches, devils, warlocks, kindly strangers, and other helpful folk as they take charge of their own happily ever after.

The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls by Claire Legrand
Practically-perfect twelve-year-old Victoria Wright must lie, sneak, and break the rules when her investigation of the disappearance of her best–and only–friend, Lawrence, mgspooky6reveals dark secrets about her town and the orphanage run by the reclusive Mrs. Cavendish.

Skulduggery Pleasant (Skulduggery Pleasant, #1) by Derek Landy
When a not-so-innocent twelve-year-old girl named Stephanie inherits her eccentric uncle’s estate, she must join forces with Skulduggery Pleasant, a skeleton mage, to save the world from an ancient evil.

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Looking for more spooky mayhem that will please a middle grade (or older) reader? Here are a few more of the many avalible options: Coraline by Neil Gaiman, The Old Willis Place by Mary Downing Hahn, The Nightmarys by Dan Poblocki, The Doll in the Garden by Mary Downing Hahn, The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury, The House with a Clock in Its Walls (Lewis Barnavelt, #1) by John Bellairs, School Spirit (Suddenly Supernatural #1) by Elizabeth Cody Kimmel,  Skeleton Man by Joseph Bruchac, The Ghost Comes Calling by Betty Ren Wright, Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver,  Ghosts I Have Been by Richard Peck, and The Ghost’s Grave by Peg Kehret.

Psychics in Fiction

crystal-ballDid you know that October 31st is Increase Your Psychic Powers Day?

I didn’t know it. Guess that means I’m not psychic. But I was curious so, like a good librarian, I began researching the topic. And discovered… Well, not a whole lot.

The day is rumored to have its origins in England back in the nineteenth century even though no one seems to have heard of this holiday until recently. Halloween is regarded as the day when the veil between the physical world and the spiritual world is weakest, so some believe if you are going to try out your psychic powers October 31 is the best day to do it.

I guess if I were psychic I would have known all about it.

Anyway, I decided to abandon the research and delve into the world of fiction. And here I hit paydirt. Literature abounds with tales of psychics.

Irish GoldAndrew Greeley, famous for his Blackie Ryan mysteries, also has a series about Nuala Anne McGrail, Irish immigrant, beautiful, a gifted singer, and, oh yes, psychic. She uses her psychic skills to solve mysteries. The first book in this series of twelve is Irish Gold.

In Too DeepThe Arcane Society novels by Amanda Quick and Jayne Ann Krentz (who just happen to be the same person) revolve around a mysterious society of people with psychic powers. The Amanda Quick books are set in England at the end of the nineteenth century. The Krentz books are all modern. All the tales are romantic suspense with a dash of psychic power.

Sleeping with FearKay Hooper has a mystery series that is described as psychic suspense. Her hero is FBI agent Noah Bishop, whose rare gift for seeing what others do not helps him solve the most puzzling cases. The books are denoted by the tagline Bishop/Special Crimes Unit and as of 2013 there fifteen titles in the series.

There are many, many more great novels about psychics. If you have a feeling you’d like to peruse a few, here is a short list, in no particular order, of ten more popular titles:

  1. Road Dogs by Elmore Leonard
  2. The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry
  3. By the Light of the Moon by Dean Koontz
  4. Pandora’s Daughter by Iris Johansen
  5. Before I Say Goodbye by Mary Higgins Calrk
  6. Darkness My Old Friend by Lisa Unger
  7. What I Had Before I Had You by Sarah Cornwell
  8. The Witch of Portobello by Paulo Coelho
  9. The Dead Path  by Stephen Irwin
  10. The Firebird by Susanna Kearsley

For a lengthier list of titles, concentrate really, really hard… Or just click this link and peruse our catalog.