Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Year of Shadows by Claire Legrand

Olivia's life has gone to hell.  Her mother is gone, her father is only interested in his music and the concerts he holds, her grandmother loves her but is very old, and now they are living in the concert hall storage rooms to save money.   How could it be any worse?

Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers and Edelweiss allowed me to download an ebook for this story for review (thank you).  The book was published at the end of August, so you can grab a copy at your local bookstore now.

I enjoy everything that Claire Legrand writes.  Her stories are lovely and magical and always leave me uplifted at the end.  This one didn't disappoint me.

Olivia finds the reason it is so cold in the concert hall is because there are ghosts there.  Ghosts that can't move on without help.  They are tied to the concert hall because there is an "anchor" there for them; something that meant something real special to them.  Unfortunately, ghosts don't hold on to their memories so they don't know what the item is.  The only way for Olivia to learn is to let them "possess" her and take her through the story of the end of their life.

The only reason Olivia has the strength to do this is because she has a boy friend that is willing to do it with her.  He's the usher at the concert hall and likes her.  He doesn't want to do it, but he will for her.  We all need friends like that.

The story is bit mystical, magical and deals with personal grief over the loss of her mother as well conflicts with her father and the pending loss of the concert hall.

I found it a good read with plenty of friendship (even with the ghosts) and people rallying around Olivia.  By the end, she's even willing to try to forgive her father for his part in her mother's disappearance from her life.  There could easily be a sequel to this story to see how well Olivia does at returning to the real world and being reunited with her father.  I wonder if Ms. Legrand has one planned?

Happy reading.

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