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Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Book Review - 'The Ghost at the Point' by Charlotte Calder

'The Ghost at the Point' is a  beautifully written mystery with a nostalgic flavour, being set 1931. Dorrie lives on an island with her grandfather whom she calls 'Gah'. Along with her cat, Poppy and horse Samson, Dorrie loves living on the wild, wind swept island, away from the town and prying eyes. Since her parents died, Dorrie has lived with her grandfather, despite Aunt Gertrude's attempts to 'civilise' them both. But one day a strange couple, the Crickles, visit the local shops, asking questions about 'Dear Gertrude's' house and it turns out they are looking for the treasure they are certain is buried near the family home. No one likes the look of this couple. Around this time Dorrie becomes aware of a figure, hanging around in the shadows. Is it the ghost Aunt Getrude used to talk about? Is it a malicious presence that means them harm? Other strange things start to happen. Scary things. And Dorrie is forced to make a decision. Is she going to tell Gah about it or bravely face the ghost herself?

Charlotte Calder writes with clarity, creating pictures which draw us into her lovingly crafted world. The dialogue of the characters rings true for that period which she expresses so fondly we yearn to go back there. And there were some truly funny moments I think will make children laugh out loud. Her sensitivity to the perils and joys of island life is evident in this exciting mystery.


"The whine of the old outboard rang out across the calm water. As he approached the beach, Gah cut the motor and tilted it forwards, while Dorrie rolled the iron boat rollers down to the water's edge. Gah passed her the fish basket, cold and heavy with its catch and then hopped out. There was rippling of water and a blowing of air. Dorrie glanced up at the dolphins gliding past on their evening fishing round. Five or six of them, only a few yards away."

You can find out more about Charlotte here: www.walkerbooks.com.au
cheers, Dawn

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