The Nighthouse Keeper (Blight Harbor 2)

The Nighthouse Keeper (Blight Harbor 2)
Age Range
Release Date
October 17, 2023
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Evie Von Rathe has been home for only a few weeks from her adventure in the strange world of seven houses when Blight Harbor’s beloved ghosts begin to disappear. Did they leave without saying goodbye, or has something gone horribly wrong? Soon Evie is invited to a mysterious council meeting, where she learns about the Dark Sun Side and a terrible secret.

Yes, the ghosts have gone missing. And that means serious trouble.

With the help of an eleven-year-old (or 111-year-old, but who’s counting) ghost named Lark, trusty Bird, and a plump ghost spider, Evie must find a way to defeat the vicious Nighthouse Keeper responsible for the missing ghosts, save her otherworldly friends, and find her way home from the Dark Sun Side before she’s trapped there forever.

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1 review
Anything for unlikely friends
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What worked:
This book is the sequel to The Clackity, a finalist for a 2022 Cybils Award, so readers will already know to expect ghosts and supernatural occurrences. Evie is the only human ever to enter the Dark Sun Side and escape back to Blight Harbor. In this book, some friendly ghosts have disappeared from the town and Evie suspects they haven’t moved on to a better place. She promises her Aunt Des that she won’t return to the Dark Sun Side to investigate but of course, she gets sucked into a situation beyond her control. She meets a witch-like character who won’t let Evie leave until she completes a seemingly impossible task at the Nighthouse.
The story includes unique characters who offer different kinds of help or dangers for Evie. Evie has a tattoo named Bird that’s able to move to different parts of her body. Bird wields some power and is usually on her back or shoulder usually acting as a barometer of danger or a voice of reason in her head. Evie meets a ghost named Lark who knows about how this strange world works and she’s accompanied by a ghostly spider named Clyde. The witchy character is Portia and she acts as the main antagonist. She possesses stolen magic that’s created problems to complicate things.
The setting is almost a character unto itself as it presents the main obstacle for Evie. She finds an ocean of black nothingness called the Radix that acts as a sentient being. It’s the source of all magical power and it gets upset when magic is stolen from it. Evie learns it doesn’t matter how far or how long it takes to reach the Nighthouse, it’s all about what she must do to get there. The author allows the Radix to dramatically and suddenly change the setting to provide challenges for Evie. For example, Evie is riding a train when she finds a spiral staircase leading down into another train car. It’s a surprising, unexpected twist to the plot and readers can expect additional strange events to pop up.
What didn’t work as well:
Some readers lacking imagination might find the strange occurrences hard to visualize and follow. Evie and Bird come to expect the weirdness and impossibility and some readers might not be as understanding. However, the strangeness keeps the story fresh and unpredictable which should keep most readers mentally engaged.
The final verdict:
The conflict is innovative as Evie travels to the world of the Radix in order to rescue her ghostly friends. The setting-shifting source of magical power oversees all of the lands and Evie realizes she must communicate with it if she’s going to complete her quest. Overall, this book shares an inventive adventure and I recommend you give it a shot!
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