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THE GOLDEN GHOST by Marion Dane Bauer


by Marion Dane Bauer & illustrated by Peter Ferguson

Age Range: 7 - 9

Pub Date: March 22nd, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-375-86649-4
Publisher: Random House

This ghost story by Bauer is a companion chapter book to her previous titles, The Blue Ghost, The Red Ghost and The Green Ghost (2005, 2008, 2008) and features an animal ghost—a golden dog. Out of boredom, Delsie and pal Todd decide to visit the supposedly haunted houses that were abandoned when the old cement mill shut down. They find one door that opens and evidence of someone living there, which spooks them. When they see an old man walking in the road, they know he’s the one. By his side is a sparkling, golden shape, the old man’s dead dog, now a ghost, but Delsie is the only one who can see it. She has longed for a dog but can’t have one because her father is allergic to animals (up to and including groundhogs, as his tired, old joke goes). Opening with the dog’s thoughts as she paces waiting for someone to see her, Bauer sets up the premise, and, of course, in the end the ghost dog comes to stay with Delsie. Credibility is strained, but kids reading this short chapter series won’t mind. (It is one of the long-standing Stepping Stones series of early readers and chapter books.) Each of these "color" ghost stories features different characters and gimmicks, sure to make fans want more. Could purple be next? (Ghost story. 7-9)