by Cathleen Davitt Bell
Review by Nicole Brinkley
Bloomsbury USA Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781599902586
Date: 24 June 2008 List Price $16.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to enter the realm of the dead? Michael Kimmel never did. But after his grandfather's death, he finds himself slipping between real life and the river that the memories of the dead flow through...
Thirteen year old Michael leads a fairly normal, if undernourished, life - his older sister, Julia, seems to be perfect at everything (though an upcoming ballet recital has her not eating out of nervousness), his mother frets over Julia being potentially anorexic and doesn't eat in turn, and his father works overtime constantly and seems to thrive on nothing but protein shakes. Michael's obsession with video games is the only thing that keeps him sane.
When his dad arrives home early one day, Michael knows something's wrong, and it doesn't take long to find out that his grandfather had passed away.
Though Michael hasn't seen his grandfather since he was seven. His grandfather begins to haunt Michael, dragging him into his memories... and into potentially losing himself.
Though the book seemed interesting enough at first, I soon became bored floating through the memories of Michael's grandfather. Much of it was rather boring and basic for a man of his era, and his problems were the same as many grandfathers - abandoning their kids to work instead. Michael reminded me a lot of my brother, which wasn't helpful so much as annoying. Julia and Michael's friends were the most developed characters, and they were the ones who weren't there the most - although the psychic was the most interesting character.
All in all, the concept was more interesting than the overall novel. The plot line was weak at times and I was able to put it down easily. If I had to rate it, it would only get a 6 out of 10.
Recommended: Only for avid ghost loving readers.