When a ghost kidnaps her father, a budding young scientist must complete a daunting task to save him.
Growing up in Riverfish, Massachusetts, Thelma Bee, an 11-year-old white girl with experimentation and exploration in her blood, dreams of the day she’ll “adventure through the world.” But when her father purchases a strange antique jewelry box, an angry ghost appears, trashing their house and screaming “RETURN” while Thelma’s father vanishes into the box. Desperate to save her father and unaware of her own supernatural powers, Thelma opens the box and finds herself in a bleak place and meets her ancestor, Annabelle, imprisoned in the box for 200 years by a sinister demon named Zachariah Understone. Annabelle tells Thelma the women in their family possess powers strong enough to “bend worlds” and “break magic” and gives her a task to perform. In order to release her father and Annabelle, Thelma must draw upon her own powers and confront Understone. Black-and-white illustrations add visual dimension to Thelma’s peculiar haunting, punctuated by secrets from the past, paranormal happenings, diverse and devoted friends, and a fiery finale. Such humorous details as a car named Gary Indiana and the bickering of Thelma’s friends in the Riverfish Valley Paranormal Society keep the tone light.
An inventive debut ghost story starring a contemporary girl with ancient powers. (Ghost story. 8-12)