Parents' Guide to

What the Dead Want

By Michael Berry, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Creepy ghost story connects history and horror.

Book Norah Olson Horror 2016
What the Dead Want Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

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It takes skill to construct a convincing tale of a haunted house, and this contemporary novel with deep roots in the past finds something new to do with the standard horror tropes. What the Dead Want provides a reasonable answer to the question of why someone would stay in a mansion they know to be haunted. Author Norah Olson makes understandable Gretchen's quest to find her missing mother's whereabouts, but she also cranks up the suspense as the plot accelerates to its climax. That Gretchen and her friends are able to solve in a few days a mystery that obsessed her Aunt Esther for decades seems a bit unrealistic, but most readers won't be bothered by that incongruity.

Book Details

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