Review Detail

Middle Grade Fiction 410
Mystery Graphic Novel
(Updated: January 22, 2023)
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
The Underlook Hotel has always been a mystery to the residents of Estes Parks, Colorado. Horror author Jack Axworth lives there, but he is rarely seen, and the hotel hasn't had guests in years. Elijah, a young filmmaker, is invited to stay at the hotel, which is big news in the small town. As Elijah is eager to meet Jack and film a documentary about him and his hotel, he learns that Rena, the hotel's caretaker, lured him there to help save it. With the help of Jack's son Danny and his tutor Suzy they investigate if The Underlook hotel is cursed and how they can save the hotel.

What I Liked: It was clear that each character had a purpose and brought something unique to the story. Rena and Suzy were written as smart, capable, and overall strong female characters. Elijah is an endearing character who is very enthusiastic about filmmaking. Danny's connection to Suzy's family made for a surprise I didn't see coming and Jack and his dementia make for an emotional subplot. Each of these characters help solve if the Underlook is cursed.

What Didn't Work: There are similarities or nods to the movie The Shining which can be fun for the adult reading it, but my children had never seen this movie and did not get the reference.

I received a copy that did not have full-color pages. The first eight pages were in color and I was able to get an idea of how the book would feel in color and it's much more engaging with colored graphics.

Featuring unique characters, Spirit Week is a mystery graphic novel that is not overly spooky and is sure to capture the attention of middle grade readers.
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