Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Death of Yorik Mortwell, by Stephen Messer


Another review posted at Children's Books and Reviews.  Here's an excerpt:
It’s not every day you come across a book where the hero dies in the first chapter.  But in The Death of Yorik Mortwell, that’s exactly what happens to 12-year-old Yorik Mortwell, orphaned son of a gamekeeper at Ravenby Manor: he dies. Fortunately for the readers, Yorik does not pass quietly into the great beyond, but returns as a ghost.

[...] a delicious spooky and morbid tale that never loses its buoyant, childlike spirit.  And with a [SPOILER] happy ending to boot, all but the most sensitive readers will be able to enjoy the thrills and chills without any actual distress. [...]

[The book] provides an excellent structure for discussing sin, confession, reconciliation, and forgiveness.  Children learn that hiding wrongdoing is a recipe for personal disaster, that confession is good for the soul, that forgiveness is always possible, and that they, in turn, should forgive others.  With such a great set of life lessons wrapped up in an eerily entertaining story, I couldn’t help enjoying this little book.
Full review available here.

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