This spooky, middle-grade story begins during summer break for Olivia and Emma, who are twins and an old friend of Emma’s named Ruby. Olivia has always been the good twin, the helper, the quiet twin. Emma and her friend Ruby used to climb out the window at night just because they could. Olivia felt Ruby was too bold and was a bad influence on her sister. Then, Emma and Ruby were no longer friends and Olivia was secretly glad. So when Emma stole a lipstick at a store, Olivia told their Mom that she did it so that Emma would not miss out on her planned vacation at camp. Mom didn’t truly believe Olivia, but because Olivia would not explain herself, she was sent to a day camp in her town for misunderstood kids. Here at this day camp Olivia runs into Ruby. The day camp assigns the small group of preteens to do a community service project. They are to catalogue all the items of books, furniture, dolls, and cabinets in a big mysterious house, known to be haunted. The town hopes that it may become a new venue for parties and weddings. When Olivia is assigned to a room where she and only she, hears a music box playing, the house becomes a bit scarier. The next day Ruby hears the music too and so the two girls begin to bond and decide to investigate a few rooms on their own. Little do they know what is happening to this house and themselves during their summer of cleansing. Only the spirits know!
This is a fun and playful story of scary situations that find the two main characters, Ruby and Olivia, growing and bonding in this coming of age story. Olivia realizes the need for her sister to find her own identity away from being a twin and Ruby finally can grieve about the death of her Grammy who she felt very close to. The author gave each girl a strong and caring mother figure to love and guide them through the awkward years. This is a great story for the middle-grade audience who enjoy a little thrill and chill as they read!
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