Ghosts

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4.5 (2)
 
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Ghosts.jpg
Publisher
Age Range
8+
Release Date
September 13, 2016
ISBN
0545540623
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Catrina and her family are moving to the coast of Northern California because her little sister, Maya, is sick. Cat isn't happy about leaving her friends for Bahía de la Luna, but Maya has cystic fibrosis and will benefit from the cool, salty air that blows in from the sea. As the girls explore their new home, a neighbor lets them in on a secret: There are ghosts in Bahía de la Luna. Maya is determined to meet one, but Cat wants nothing to do with them. As the time of year when ghosts reunite with their loved ones approaches, Cat must figure out how to put aside her fears for her sister's sake -- and her own.

Raina Telgemeier has masterfully created a moving and insightful story about the power of family and friendship, and how it gives us the courage to do what we never thought possible.

Editor reviews

2 reviews

Moving tale of sisterhood and changes
(Updated: January 05, 2017)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
When Catrina and her family move to get better treatment for her sister, Maya, she isn’t too happy. Cat doesn’t want to leave her friends and home, but their move is necessary. In their new town, Bahía de la Luna, Cat and Maya go exploring and find a neighbor who tells them about ghosts. Maya is immediately interested and wants to meet one, but Cat doesn’t want to be a part of it. As Cat navigates through her fear, she must figure out what it means to love fully, adjust to new situations, and be honest with herself and others.

Raina Telgemeier’s GHOSTS introduces a moving tale of sisters. Cat and Maya have a loving, though often strained, relationship, which is challenged in a new way when the family moves to a new place. Maya has cystic fibrosis, and Telgemeier includes several scenes of Maya having treatments and some of the day-to-day lifestyles those with this illness have. Maya is not defined only by her illness, however. It is part of her, a part that is purposefully shown, just as her energetic personality, love for her family, and enthusiasm for adventure are. Cat, who does not have cystic fibrosis, worries for her sister frequently, and it is this worry that leads to Cat’s fears, often causing a rift between her and her sister.

They have ups and downs in their relationship as most siblings do, but under it all is a deep love and respect for each other. Both take to their new environment differently. I especially enjoy Cat’s hesitancy, even all out refusal, towards the change. Moves that involve new schools and distance from friends can be particularly difficult, and Cat feels this. We see her anger and frustration, but we also see her slowly open up to her neighbors and her town, as she learns that a little kindness and openness can go a long way.

However, I would encourage people to read the following discussions about the representation of the Indigenous ghosts and the use of the Day of the Dead in GHOSTS: American Indians in Children’s Literature’s review (https://americanindiansinchildrensliterature.blogspot.com/2016/09/not-recommended-ghosts-by-raina.html) and Reading While White’s post (http://readingwhilewhite.blogspot.com/2016/09/on-ghosts-and-magic-of-day-of-dead.html). While there are several parts of this graphic novel to love, that does not mean it is without flaw and error, and potential readers should be sure to be aware of this beforehand.
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A Reading Treat!
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Ghost is a beautifully written and illustrated story. Raina Telgemeier's best yet. I received an advance copy during San Diego Comic Con. I picked it up on the flight home and couldn't put it down. Cat and Maya feel like familiar friends and even family members. Cat and Maya's relationship is realistic and you feel for both sisters. There is enough mystery to keep the pages turning. I love the story and wish there was more to read about both Cat and Maya.

Ghosts also deals with important themes of friends, family, traditions, and understanding. I love that the story also deals with family tradition and Dia de los Muertos . Ghosts is emotional and heartfelt and will instantly grab readers. Fans of Raina Telgemeier will not not be disappointed.
Good Points
Easy to read
Engaging
Lovable characters
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