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WAKE ME AT MIDNIGHT by Barthe DeClements

WAKE ME AT MIDNIGHT

by Barthe DeClements

Age Range: 10 & up

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1991
ISBN: 0-670-84038-6
Publisher: Viking

 Strange noises in the night herald the start of another of DeClements's routine grade-school stories, in this case mildly enlivened by a mystery. Sixth-grader Caitlin worries about ``Bones,'' her junior- high next-door neighbor whose mother's parsimony keeps him thin and poorly dressed. She worries more when mysterious digging noises emanate from his yard at night and his appearance suddenly improves. Meanwhile, new neighbor Missy inveigles Caitlin into spying on other neighbors who, in a blandly written climax, prove to be thieves. Ultimately, the answer to the Bones mystery (only remotely connected to the thefts) is also revealed. Though DeClements has a good ear for dialogue and produces some interesting characters in offbeat situations, her flat narrative style muffles both suspense and reader involvement. At best, a minor effort. (Fiction. 10+)*justify no*