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This was like HGTV ghost stories as ghost terrorize a contractor and his builders. The biggest problem I had was trying to follow the perspective of the two different points of view or it was abruptly obvious Mary here. Librarians save your money for another book. How in the world did Scholastic publish this without more major editing??

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May 16, Laura Mauro rated it really liked it. I was enjoying it but the ending took me off guard. I loved the narrator that we had and how focused on the history of the islands it was. It did have some pacing issues but it was a fun story. I wish the kids character may have been more focused in the story.

But the ending I def did not see coming and really eventually want to re-read this book and see how that knowledge effect the story. May 31, Denise Chojnacki rated it liked it Shelves: Have just finished this book I have to admit I'm sitting here a bit dazed. While the writing itself is good and the story flowed, I'm confused! The voice of Mary Chase coming in and out throughout the chapters was enough to throw me off a bit but just when I thought I was getting a handle on this book the ending totally confused me.

Now I'm not sure exactly who was dead and who was alive. The storyline was interesting and not scary but I feel like I just don't have a grip on what really happened Have just finished this book I have to admit I'm sitting here a bit dazed. The storyline was interesting and not scary but I feel like I just don't have a grip on what really happened; thus the 3 stars.

Not sure if I'd pick this up again or not. The book is narrated by ghost Mary W. One night mysterious footprints shuffle ashore and piques the interest of the children on the island, some of whom claim that they can see and communicate with ghosts. These ghosts have returned in response to renovations of historical island houses, an effort headed by the sneaky Eddy Nold. Phee, her grandfather Sal, and friend Gabe, along with the other members of the Out of the Wild Night is a ghost story and mystery set on the shores of Nantucket.

Phee, her grandfather Sal, and friend Gabe, along with the other members of the North End Gang, conspire to help the ghosts in preventing the renovations. Soon, the increasingly violent nature of the ghost's actions become alarming. Balliett's vivid descriptions brings the Nantucket shore alive and the setting soon becomes a character itself. I was drawn in by the mention of ghosts and a having a ghost narrator is appealing, however, it will not hold reader's attention with a meandering plot, multiple subplots, and a large cast of characters that was hard to keep track of and may seem unnecessary.

While there are plenty of spooky moments with classic creaky stairs and doors that open for no reason, readers who are eager for a real ghost story will be disappointed to wait for quite some time before it happens.


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This book requires patience and the focused attention of its readers. There is a nice twist at the end story but I fear many will quit this book before reaching it. It is clear that Balliett has a strong connection to Nantucket and to history, but I can not see how this book will be appealing to younger readers. Aug 10, Leslie rated it it was ok. I thought the opening chapter of this book was really cool, with the ghost narrating.

The Dying of the Light

However, the book just goes on and on about how we shouldn't renovate old homes. I don't think kids really care about that and after reading it in almost every chapter, I didn't care about it either. I wanted more spooky happenings and less talk about old wood. It was supposed to be a ghost story not a lesson on home restoration.

Jun 13, Sharie rated it it was ok Shelves: Aug 06, Heather rated it did not like it. I agree gutting old houses is sad. It is amazing how we can suddenly, on times of emergency, be so different from our previous lives. He had been a very fussy bachelor, extremely difficult, I'm sure, to deal with. And then when he found himself among people who needed him - young men, some of them very badly maimed and dying and injured and in a context of terrible smells and terrible sights - he sort of threw off that fastidious manner and he rose to the occasion.

He was just very, very human. He read the newspaper and some poetry to the soldiers, but he didn't read his own writing because he knew it would not be appropriate.

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You talk about being human. It's curious because the last days of Emily Dickinson, you imagine her as a robot. I was trying to think of a metaphor for how we bring art and music and poetry into our lives. People have libraries at home, they have bookshelves, they have CDs. And they sort of try, people try to bring great artists into their lives, into their physical houses and sort of live with portions of them.

But they're not really deeply engaging with them. So, I took it a step farther where people could have little mannequins of great people, like Sigmund Freud, or it could be Babe Ruth, or it could be Abraham Lincoln - in this case it's Emily Dickinson - and have this person come and live in your house. Of course, it's a computer program that's been put into a mannequin and can respond in ways that seem lifelike. She seems more flesh and blood as a robot. I mean, we always read about her, you know, secluded in her room and so forth. But in this one, I get the sense that even as a mechanical, she kind of longs to break free.

Well, she was not secluded in her room. She was in the house. Basically she was like a housewife. What she didn't do was after the age of about 20, she didn't travel. Maybe it's not her being so much flesh and blood but the way that the two people that buy her treat her. They keep forgetting that she's a replicate.


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Yes, and you would because she's so - I think Emily Dickinson's poetry is just so brilliant and so enigmatic. There are poets, among them my friends, I mean, major American poets, who think Emily Dickinson might be among the very, very best poet who ever lived.

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Out of the Wild Night by Blue Balliett

May 24, Gina rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Literary Geeks. She takes her title from a very uncharacteristic poem by Emily Dickinson which first of all cannot be sung to "The Yellow Rose of Texas. Oates knows and likely reveres all the "Wild Nights" hardly describes the tone of this latest Oates fiction.

Oates knows and likely reveres all the afore-mentioned authors. She not only pierces to the heart of their characters but does a drop-dead perfect imitation of each of their eccentric styles. Hemingway's chapter is like an episode from SNL until it gets deadly serious. I fear the stigma of "spoiler," so I will avoid giving specific details. How about twenty-five words or less about each piece.

That should titillate but leave the reader still panting. Creepy is back in this story told when Poe chooses to live alone with a terrier as a lighthouse keeper.

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Some details made me retch. Those with weak stomachs have been warned. Hang on, Dear Reader: she of the bun meets science fiction.