The Morrow family is taking over the infamous Begonia House December 1st, but here's a glimpse into the mystery...
Release date: DECEMBER 1, 2015
Delacorte Press/ Random House Kids Books
MIDDLE GRADE/ ages 10 and up
Authors: Jessica Haight & Stephanie Robinson
Illustrator: Roman Muradov
Publicity contact: Samuel Terris firstname.lastname@example.org
A Disturbing Note
The Morrows gave each other a nervous look and then walked through the double-door entrance of the Begonia House. Auntie Em waddled into the room, sniffed a few times, and as usual, plopped down in a corner and began to snore. Whoa, thought Fairday. This is definitely going to be different from our town house in Manhattan. She scanned her surroundings; it all seemed impossibly huge and frighteningly old. They were standing in a gigantic foyer with a high ceiling and a wide staircase that spiraled down from the upper level. The cracked black-and-white checkered floor was coated with a thick layer of filth. Hanging from the ceiling was a crystal chandelier that was so covered in dust it looked like a tinkling blob floating ominously above them.
Time seemed to have stopped. Fairday couldn’t believe the size of the place or how dirty it was. The wallpaper was crumbling, and there were cobwebs hanging from every corner. Even the ancient light fixtures were creepy; they reminded her of those fake candles people put out at Halloween. The air had a stale, funny smell that she couldn’t quite identify, something like burnt popcorn. A cold breeze blew through the doorway and sent a chill down her spine, the hair standing up on the back of her neck. Fairday shivered.
|Catch the Book Buzz...|
"I really enjoyed this book. It was a marvelously done, debut, thriller novel. Ms. Robinson and Ms. Haight are great authors that really pull you into their story. I couldn’t get out until that final sentence. And, by then I wanted more. To say I want a second book is an understatement. The writing style is compelling, and makes me feel as if I was there with Fairday and her friends. I really like the illustrations in the book. They are like the ribbon on a present, or the icing on the cake. I give this book five out of five bookworms!"
~ Erik Weibel/ This Kid Reviews Books
"Mixing realism and fantasy, Haight and Robinson’s debut opens with 11-year-old Fairday’s move from Manhattan to a small town in Connecticut, where her relentlessly cheerful parents plan to turn a dilapidated Victorian into a bed and breakfast. No sooner has the family arrived than eerie sights and sounds begin to haunt Fairday. The house turns out to hold dark secrets that everybody in town suspects but nobody can explain: a perfect mission for Fairday and her best friend Lizzy’s Detective Mystery Squad (DMS)."
~ Publishers Weekly
"Fifth-grader Fairday Morrow's new home lives up to its spooky reputation, but she and her companions in the Detective Mystery Squad find out why. At Begonia House, strains of bagpipe music issue from behind a padlocked door, grains of sand in an hourglass have stopped falling, and a malevolent weeping willow looms in the backyard. A magic mirror shows an invisible door; a wardrobe hides secrets and a portal. Ruby Begonia vanished more than 50 years ago. Is there also a ghost? Fairday has a new, helpful friend in classmate Marcus, and her best friend Lizzy can visit on weekends to help solve the mystery. What more could readers want?"
~ Kirkus Reviews
Jessica Haight is a true New Englander, with a deep desire to be near the ocean and a love of the four seasons. She enjoys drawing while standing up and cultivating magic in her garden. She easily floats away in the pages of a good story and is still waiting for her owl from Hogwarts.
Stephanie Robinson lives with her husband in a quiet town, though not as quaint as Ashpot. After teaching fifth grade for almost fifteen years, she is now enjoying her role as a school media specialist.
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