- Age Range: 8 - 12 years
- Grade Level: 3 - 7
- Lexile Measure: 300 (What's this?)
- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: GRAPHIX; First Paperback Edition edition (September 13, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0545540623
- ISBN-13: 978-0545540629
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 593 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #828 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Ghosts Paperback – September 13, 2016
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* "Telgemeier's bold colors, superior visual storytelling, and unusual subject matter will keep readers emotionally engaged and unable to put down this compelling tale." -- Kirkus Reviews, starred review
* "A can't-miss addition to middle grade graphic novel shelves; hand to fans of the author and newcomers alike." -- School Library Journal, starred review
* "The story is consistently engaging, the plot is tightly built." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review
"[A] gem of a graphic novel" -- Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Raina Telgemeier's characters fizz with visual energy." -- The New York Times Book Review
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I suppose the title gives it away, but yes, this is a story of ghosts, but it is also a story of childhood, which Raina does so well. It is a story of illness, but also of family. It is a story of fitting in, and not fitting in.
As usual the drawings are fantastic, and although she said it was inspired by Half Moon Bay, it seems to be more like Montara, a little further north. Also, I am quite sure she went to the Santa Cruz Boardwalk, as that looks so close to how it looks it is as though I am walking with the two sisters.
I don't want to give anything away, but if you like Raina's other books, you will probably enjoy this one as well.
Why I picked it up: Raina Telgemeier is another one of those authors that I will read anything she writes forever.
Why I finished it: Telgemeier has a unique ability to take sensitive subjects and situations and create stories about how we can muster the courage to take the next step forward and recover from our own shortcomings. Ghosts deals with cystic fibrosis, a genetic disease that can cause a buildup of mucus in the lungs which can lead to other serious respiratory problems. Telgemeier takes us inside the lives of these two fictional sisters to explore the very real issues that individuals and families with loved ones batting cystic fibrosis must be aware of on a constant basis. It's a struggle for Cat to have to share her life with her sister, but she has also taken on the role of protector which perhaps prevents her from having to deal with her own fears. The festival of Dìa de lost Muertos that the town participates in each year (and is celebrated worldwide, usually around the same time as Halloween) helps Cat begin to put some perspective about how we celebrate life and how to live her life to the fullest. She knows Maya's cystic fibrosis will only get worse as she gets older, and at one point Maya asks her parents why she shouldn't make the most of the time she has now while things aren't too bad. Death is a weighty subject to be sure, but Telgemeier seems to arrange the notion in a context that is perhaps not so scary and foreboding to the reader. Thanks to the softness of her art style and the wonderful colors by Lamb, the story still has a lighthearted, wholesome feel to it - like having a conversation with a close friend. Ghosts is a story about how we connect with our family both in life and in death, and how they can give us the courage to keep going when the odds are against us.