Can Linc hope for anything near a normal life when his widowed mother is an absent-minded professor specializing in burial customs?
Twelve-year-old Lincoln Raintree Crenshaw Junior knows it will be a difficult transition when he transfers to public school from “Home-Away-From-Home-School” (several faculty children—Ho-Hos—taught together in Dr. Lindstrom’s basement). He didn’t know his first official field trip would be to the Oakland Cemetery, which is literally in his backyard…or that his mother, Dr. Charlotte Landers, would be the one leading the tour. He convinces her to pretend he’s just another student, but of course that goes horribly wrong. In an attempt to be cool, he decides he’ll use the supposedly cursed Black Angel monument for his adopt-a-grave research project. Instead of cool he gets a heap of trouble from the new cemetery “warden,” Mr. Kilgore, and a mysterious connection, through his father, to a grave adopted by another new student. Ray’s tale, which centers around a real legend, strikes the perfect balance of humor, realistic chills and near-teen angst. Linc’s problems with his eccentric mother, their shared grief over his father’s unexpected death and Linc’s trials at school are expertly woven into the dual mysteries: the real story of the Black Angel and a secret from his father’s past.Actual epitaphs from across the globe kick off each chapter for extra funereal fun. (Mystery. 9-12)