Sunday, August 15, 2010

Draw the Dark by Ilsa J. Bick

Christian is an orphan. His father disappeared and his mom talked about his father going into a sideways(?) world. Then his mother disappeared too, and Christian was sure she went into the same sideways world...

Lerner Publishing Group will be publishing this book in October, and will be available in hardcover and Adobe eReader edition. My review copy came from Net Galley (thank you).

This book is a combination fantasy/horror story. Christian finds that when he paints people, they die - which is a horrible thing for a child to live with. He's now 17, but it isn't getting any easier for him.

Then his dreams start transporting him back in time and he sees historical moments from the town he lives in. But no one claims to have any knowledge about the past he's trying to research. And he finds he is sleepwalking and doing strange things - like painting on the dilapidated barn owned by the city's richest man. He can't remember doing it, but when your Uncle is the sheriff and the evidence is irrefutable, there's not much you can say.

There is a mix of past and present, and Ms. Bick does a good job of moving the reader back and forth in time without confusing any issues. The evil that came to town in the mid-forties is still there. And Christian is being drawn in to help solve the crime of long ago and avenge the dead. He's also finding himself close to the door of the sideways world...

This is a fast read because the action is fast-paced and you can't wait to see what happens to Christian next. I'd suggest this for children 14+. It has an adult theme and the child may still have some questions about what they read. The history segment involves the Jews and Nazis in America. There were several war prisons in the US that your child could read about in non-fiction books and articles for additional reading. There was a German Interment Camp at Fort Stanton, NM, from 1941-1945.

Look for the book in October in your local bookstore or buy the ebook for your reader. It is a good, fast read.

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