Twelve-year-old Katherine Bateson believes in a logical explanation for everything. But even she can't make sense of the strange goings-on at Rookskill Castle, the drafty old Scottish castle-turned-school where she and her siblings have been sent to escape the London Blitz. Read more...
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Twelve-year-old Katherine Bateson believes in a logical explanation for everything. But even she can't make sense of the strange goings-on at Rookskill Castle, the drafty old Scottish castle-turned-school where she and her siblings have been sent to escape the London Blitz. What's making those mechanical shrieks at night? Why do the castle's walls seem to have a mind of their own? And who are the silent children who seem to haunt Rookskill's grounds? Kat believes Lady Eleanor, who rules the castle, is harboring a Nazi spy. But when her classmates begin to vanish, one by one, Kat must face the truth about what the castle actually harbors--and what Lady Eleanor is--before it's too late.
Selected for the Spirit of Texas Reading Program, a finalist for the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Award, and more, this tale of magic and power has charmed readers everywhere.
- ISBN-13: 9780451476333
- ISBN-10: 0451476336
- Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers
- Publish Date: March 2016
- Page Count: 400
- Reading Level: Ages 10-UP
- Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.9 x 1.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.05 pounds
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-01-04
- Reviewer: Staff
In this intricately plotted thriller from Fox (Sirens), the stalwart Bateson children have more to fear from Lady Eleanor, headmistress of their new boarding school in Scotland, than from the bombs of the 1940 London Blitz. Evacuated with two younger siblings to live in a distant relative’s castle, 12-year-old Katherine has only her father’s parting words, her great-aunt’s parting gift of a silver heirloom chatelaine, and fellow student Peter for support in a terrifying battle against evil forces set loose 200 years earlier. Warnings of frightening nighttime noises and disappearing children quickly come too close for comfort, and the quartet’s certainty of a Nazi threat sets them on a trail of discovery and misdirection. Initially grounded in logic and her father’s teachings, Kat’s faith crumbles against disconcerting evidence that, in this castle, magic is real, nothing is what it seems, and a Voldemort-like villainess must be destroyed. True-to-life protagonists, the skillful interweaving of flashbacks and the chatelaine motif, a masterful final encounter, and a satisfying denouement attest to Fox’s craftsmanship. Ages 10–up. Agent: Erin Murphy, Erin Murphy Literary Agency. (Mar.)