13 HANGMEN by Art Corriveau


Age Range: 9 - 14
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When Tony DiMarco’s family moves from Ann Arbor, Mich., to Boston’s North End, Tony finds himself in the middle of a mystery going back to the days of Paul Revere.

Tony is about to turn 13 when the DiMarcos move into a town house at 13 Hangmen Court. His great-uncle, Zio Angelo, has died and left the house to the DiMarcos, oddly stipulating that Tony should get his attic bedroom. And it’s in that attic room that Tony discovers a slate shelf above the bookcase with an odd spiral shape carved into its center, with a mysterious power to conjure people from the past. The novel’s cover featuring a ghostly Red Sox player from the past suggests that this will be a baseball mystery, and readers may be disappointed when they realize it’s not. Instead, it’s a complex tale involving everything from Algonquin vision quests, Hermann Minkowski’s "block universe" theory, the Great Molasses Flood of 1919, the Underground Railroad, gangsters, witch trials and Paul Revere. This abundance of historical detail is perhaps too weighty for the relatively modest mystery at the story’s core. Readers who love history may look beyond the lure of the Red Sox mystery and find themselves happily immersed in the fascinating tale.

Ghostly fun in old Boston. (historical note) (Fantasy. 9-14)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-4197-0159-7
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Amulet/Abrams
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2012


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