December 13, 2012

Eldritch Manor

Eldritch Manor
by Kim Thompson (Dundurn Press)

When twelve-year-old Willa meets the old folks at Eldritch Manor, she can't help thinking that something's not quite right over there. She suspects that they're all prisoners of their sinister landlady, Miss Trang. Only when Willa is hired on as housekeeper does she discover the truth, which is far more fascinating.

Eldritch Manor is a retirement home for some very strange beings. One of them is a mermaid. Another is a fairy. And they're all rather eccentric, rude and cantankerous. However, they're forced to come together when ominous signs appear on the horizon. Then Miss Trang has to depart on urgent business, leaving Willa in charge.

Willa soon finds herself dealing with some dangerous forces. Temporal rifts are tearing the house apart and its inhabitants are no longer safe. In an exciting, action-filled climax, Willa discovers a courage she didn't know she had, and a secret about her own past.

Thompson's fast-paced fantasy is sure to appeal to young readers who love myth and magic. The open-ended finale, filled with wonder and intrique, will have them waiting eagerly for the next installment.

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