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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hang on to your flashlights and be ready for some really great twists!
It feels like the Dredge dug the heart out of my town and chucked it into the woods. All that's left are the ghosts walking around.

Ryan and Sarah may have been able to get out of their last predicament at the Dredge during the events of SKELETON KEY, but that incident is not going to stop them from continuing their explorations. Ryan writes, Sarah records, and...
Published on November 2, 2009 by KidsReads

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Thought it would be Interesting - bought for my daughter
Not quite what I thought it would be.... maybe it was a little too young for my daughter when I got it for her. She did not get into it.
Published 23 months ago by Gwyn


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hang on to your flashlights and be ready for some really great twists!, November 2, 2009
By 
KidsReads (New York, NY) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
It feels like the Dredge dug the heart out of my town and chucked it into the woods. All that's left are the ghosts walking around.

Ryan and Sarah may have been able to get out of their last predicament at the Dredge during the events of SKELETON KEY, but that incident is not going to stop them from continuing their explorations. Ryan writes, Sarah records, and together they construct another fantastic story full of twists, turns and big surprises. The two friends are obsessed with the Dredge and the ghost of Old Joe Bush --- and the more they uncover, the closer they get to the real answers. But something just isn't right; obviously, forces are at work to stop them, and time is running out. Old Joe has even been in Ryan's room and has written messages on the wall. Now, in a matter of days, the Dredge will be burned to the ground, and all those secrets will go unanswered forever.

Ryan does most of his sleuthing on the computer. His broken leg prohibits lots of activity, though he does manage to get around. His parents are also still set against any communication with Sarah, so activities are strictly done in secret. By following Sarah's leads, they slowly begin to uncover more information. What Ryan least expects to find is that his father is part of a secret society called the "Crossbones." The group, they discover, is directly related to the Dredge and Joe Bush --- but for what purpose? And what about Ryan's discovery of a list of names connected to the Crossbones group, made up of scientists long since dead: Sir Isaac Newton, Robert Hooke and Robert Boyle? Ryan is eventually able to connect the dots between the three men, but the closer he gets to the truth, the more questions he has.

When Ryan identifies that his dad is involved with Crossbones, he realizes that there is no one left he can trust except Sarah. He can't even trust his own mother, for she may be involved as well. The only adult he can rely on is Harry, his father's best friend. Ryan describes Harry as "the coolest guy around" and confides in him. But has Ryan placed his trust in the right person, or does the influence of Crossbones run deeper than he imagined?

In the meantime, Sarah does her own exploring into the secrets of the Dredge. She works out a system of communication through emails and hidden notes so that she and Ryan can share the information they obtain. Eventually, the intrepid pair discovers when the next Crossbones meeting is taking place, but when bodies start piling up, the situation goes from bad to worse. Who is safe anymore? Everything is closing in, and Sarah and Ryan are getting desperate.

Patrick Carman's style is fun and entertaining but with pangs of suspense as well. All the way to the last chilling pages, readers will be enthralled and totally surprised by the unexpected answers. This sequel to SKELETON CREEK continues with tightrope tension interwoven with pop culture and literary references. Everybody here seems to be a suspect, and no one can be trusted. Hang on to your flashlights and be ready for some really great twists!

And on a side note, be sure to visit[...] so you can enjoy all the interactive activities in GHOST IN THE MACHINE.

--- Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read!, January 19, 2010
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
Sarah Fincher and her friend Ryan, two 15 year olds, return in this Skeleton Creek sequal looking for answers to the cryptic room they found in the town dredge. The Ghost of Joe Bush is now stalking them as a warning to stay away. The more Sarah digs around for answers the more suspicious everyone appears to be. Once again everything appears connected. All this snooping around only leads them into trouble.

A fantastic engaging concept for young readers. In an age where lap tops have become our clutch, and semi-distraction for young-ins, this book is a great way to stimulate your kid! I couldn't put this one down, and was amazed at the bits and pieces of the mystery unleashed every few chapters on the website. Brilliant!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tremendous story and new media format, October 23, 2009
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
This much-anticipated sequel to Skeleton Creek is written in the same unique fashion. It is not just a book but a multimedia arts experience. The story is told in two parts; the first of the book is Ryan's journal and the second is amateur videos from his friend Sarah Fincher. The book also has a collection of websites and supplemental material to make the story more interesting and innovative. As you read through the book, every now and again you are given a code to access a video on the website sarahfincher (dot)com. Combined with Ryan's journal they tell one complete story. Patrick Carman has created a new entertainment medium with this series, and done a masterful job of it. Like the first book in the series, I read the story alone first, then I read it while watching the videos. The book has the power to stand on its own but is incredible with the videos.

The story continues after the first novel. Sarah and Ryan are trying to find out the mystery around the town's name of Skeleton Creek and the old Mining Dredge out in the woods. Because of Ryan's broken leg in the first book, their parents are trying to keep the two apart. But their youthful technology savvy and desire to find the truth drives them on to keep investigating and the more they learn the more afraid they become.

The story is full of ghosts, rumors of murder, and hidden gold, and these two characters are locked in a struggle to find out the truth before all the clues are destroyed when the town burns the dredge to the ground. The story is addictive; the reader will not want to put it down; you will find yourself wanting to read to the next video and then after watching it, deciding to keep reading even longer.

This book is a fantastic story by an amazing story teller. It is riveting, and skillfully written and filmed. It is an intriguing new form of entertainment that I am sure will be copied and emulated. Carman has crafted not only a new media format, combining writing and video into a single book, but does it very well.

First Published in Imprint 2009-10-23.)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hubby's Review, December 13, 2009
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
"Ghost in the Machine," by Patrick Carman, is a multimedia young adult mystery. This is the second book in this series, the first was Skeleton Creek. "Ghost" has two parts, the written and the video. The written is called Ryan's journal. Ryan, an aspiring writer, and his best friend Sarah, an aspiring movie maker, stumble on a secret society associated with an old time gold dredge in Skeleton Creek, Oregon. A gold dredge is a huge machine that moves, dredges a creek, and gets the gold out.

You start with reading Ryan's journal and at various points you click on a website found in the book, enter a password provided for that section and watch the video. Basically you are reading and watching the story. This was fun. I didn't read/see Skeleton Creek, but was told the outline by my daughter who loved it.

Patrick Carman's books, "Skeleton Creek" and "Ghost in the Machine," use of video to tell parts of the story heightens the emotional aspect, while the written part allows the mystery details to be uncovered and pondered about. Both work to make this an exciting and fast read. If you haven't read them yet, start with "Skeleton Creek." This is well worth the time to experience.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tightrope Tension Interwoven with Pop Culture and Literary References, October 26, 2009
By 
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
It feels like the Dredge dug the heart out of my town and chucked it into the woods. All that's left are the ghosts walking around.

Ryan and Sarah may have been able to get out of their last predicament at the Dredge during the events of SKELETON KEY, but that incident is not going to stop them from continuing their explorations. Ryan writes, Sarah records, and together they construct another fantastic story full of twists, turns and big surprises. The two friends are obsessed with the Dredge and the ghost of Old Joe Bush --- and the more they uncover, the closer they get to the real answers. But something just isn't right; obviously, forces are at work to stop them, and time is running out. Old Joe has even been in Ryan's room and has written messages on the wall. Now, in a matter of days, the Dredge will be burned to the ground, and all those secrets will go unanswered forever.

Ryan does most of his sleuthing on the computer. His broken leg prohibits lots of activity, though he does manage to get around. His parents are also still set against any communication with Sarah, so activities are strictly done in secret. By following Sarah's leads, they slowly begin to uncover more information. What Ryan least expects to find is that his father is part of a secret society called the "Crossbones." The group, they discover, is directly related to the Dredge and Joe Bush --- but for what purpose? And what about Ryan's discovery of a list of names connected to the Crossbones group, made up of scientists long since dead: Sir Isaac Newton, Robert Hooke and Robert Boyle? Ryan is eventually able to connect the dots between the three men, but the closer he gets to the truth, the more questions he has.

When Ryan identifies that his dad is involved with Crossbones, he realizes that there is no one left he can trust except Sarah. He can't even trust his own mother, for she may be involved as well. The only adult he can rely on is Harry, his father's best friend. Ryan describes Harry as "the coolest guy around" and confides in him. But has Ryan placed his trust in the right person, or does the influence of Crossbones run deeper than he imagined?

In the meantime, Sarah does her own exploring into the secrets of the Dredge. She works out a system of communication through emails and hidden notes so that she and Ryan can share the information they obtain. Eventually, the intrepid pair discovers when the next Crossbones meeting is taking place, but when bodies start piling up, the situation goes from bad to worse. Who is safe anymore? Everything is closing in, and Sarah and Ryan are getting desperate.

Patrick Carman's style is fun and entertaining but with pangs of suspense as well. All the way to the last chilling pages, readers will be enthralled and totally surprised by the unexpected answers. This sequel to SKELETON CREEK continues with tightrope tension interwoven with pop culture and literary references. Everybody here seems to be a suspect, and no one can be trusted. Hang on to your flashlights and be ready for some really great twists!

And on a side note, be sure to visit [...] so you can enjoy all the interactive activities in GHOST IN THE MACHINE.

--- Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!!, October 15, 2009
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
I read the first book, Skeleton Creek, with my fifth grade class and the kids were so engaged! I read Ghost in the Machine in less than two days! It was spookier than the first, which I loved. I was worried that the second book would not live up to the hype, which is usually the case with sequels. Not this time. Ryan and Sarah work to uncover the mystery behind Skeleton Creek, all the while doing so behind their parents' backs. My students were BEGGING me to read this sequel with them when we return to school next week. Thank you, Patrick Carman, for bringing this story to life in such a unique format and presentation. Fantastic!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, January 13, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
Came in perfect condition even though I bought it used read it in two days very good book thank you
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5.0 out of 5 stars I think the author is trying to say that a good relation between friends can go a long ways, September 19, 2014
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
Carman Patrick,” Ghost in the machine”
Ghost in the machine (Ryan’s journal), by Carman Patrick .Patrick Carman was born in February 27, 1966; married, wife’s name Karen; children; Reece, sierra, both girls. Hobbies or interests; mountain biking, fly fishing, crosswords puzzles, basketball, reading, and spending time with family. Patrick is not only a writer but an entrepreneur. Founded four businesses, including an advertising agency. Volunteer on behalf of literacy campaigns.
The book “ghost in the machine” starts off in modern day time in a small time called skeleton creek, with these two friends Ryan and Sarah. When the story starts Ryan and Sarah are exploring an old abandon dredge, having disturbed the old building, and the aberration of “old man Joe bush”, a worker who died and now haunts the dredge. Ryan and Sarah both being curious they decide to go one more time, finding that there is a secret society with names of many town members including Ryan’s dad. Both Ryan and Sarah are committed to solving the secrets to the dredge and this new society Ryan’s dad is in.
I think the author is trying to say that a good relation between friends can go a long ways ;through a lot and will always have each other’s back, won’t ever turn their back when you need them most in life and if you maintain that your friendship will last.
I really liked this book; it always made me want to turn the page to see what will happen next, it kept me interested since page 1. I felt the book was full of suspense and mystery, exactly the stuff I like to read about. This book was full of imagery it made me feel like I was actually in the book and was going through what they were going through.
I would recommend this book to someone who enjoys suspense, also a book that would keep them entertained throughout the full length. This was I book someone might stay up after their bedtime just to finish. I believe this book would be for a lot of different categories of people, for instance, someone just trying to pass the time, or even someone potentially doing a project over the book, like myself.

Reference: Carman Patrick, Ghost in the machine. New York: Scholastic Inc.2009
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5.0 out of 5 stars sequel to scary, October 30, 2010
By 
X. Hao (Michijgan, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
Have you ever been spied on by a ghost? Well. Ryan and Sarah are!
Story continues in ghost in the machine, Old Joe Bush is writing notes on Ryan's wall, telling him messages to not go back to the dredge, but does he listen? Nope, he keeps going back to the dredge with Sarah, and with every trip, and every video, they get closer about Old Joe Bush, and the sectet society, Crossbones.As time gets closer to burnig the dredge,Ryan and Sarah get more despereate and making more trips than ever to the dredge with Sarah.
If you liked skeleton creek you will like ghost in the machine TWICE as much!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful series, October 10, 2009
This review is from: Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) (Hardcover)
Skeleton Creek and Ghost in the Machine combine to make a compelling mystery/ghost story. Ryan's journal has the voice of a teenager while Sarah's videos keep you on the edge of your seat. My students can't wait to get their hands on these books and are fully engaged in their reading with these stories. They love the addition of videos that truly are as important to the story as the text itself.
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Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2)
Ghost In The Machine: Ryan's Journal (Skeleton Creek, No. 2) by Patrick Carman (Hardcover - October 1, 2009)
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