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Scritch Scratch: A Ghost Story *SSYR* #3 by…
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Scritch Scratch: A Ghost Story *SSYR* #3 (edition 2021)

by Lindsay Currie (Author)

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794300,505 (3.91)None
For fans of Small Spacescomes a chilling ghost story about a malevolent spirit, an unlucky girl, and a haunting mystery that will tie the two together. Claire has absolutely no interest in the paranormal. She's a scientist, which is why she can't think of anything worse than having to help out her dad on one of his ghost-themed Chicago bus tours. She thinks she's made it through when she sees a boywith a sad face and dark eyes at the back of the bus. There's something off about his presence, especially because when she checks at the end of the tour...he's gone. Claire tries to brush it off, she must be imagining things, letting her dad's ghost stories get the best of her. But then the scratching starts. Voices whisper to her in the dark. The number 396 appears everywhere she turns. And the boy with the dark eyes starts following her. Claire is beinghaunted. The boy from the bus wants something...and Claire needs to find out what before it's too late.… (more)
Member:ELA-6
Title:Scritch Scratch: A Ghost Story *SSYR* #3
Authors:Lindsay Currie (Author)
Info:Sourcebooks Young Readers (2021), 304 pages
Collections:Your library
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Scritch Scratch by Lindsay Currie

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Showing 4 of 4
This novel is a 2022 Lone Star selection. I thought this novel was the scariest of the scary novels on the list this year.

Claire resembles me--it's not that I believe in ghosts, but I also am not going to visit haunted places. Franky, darkness scares me as it does Claire. She counts when going into the dark alley at her home in Chicago. She refuses to "go all in" on her dad's ghost stories. His entire career revolves around ghosts--bringing the tragic history of Chicago alive on ghost tours. Because of scheduling issues, Claire has to help her dad one night with his tour. How embarrassing! She does not want to be seen with her crazy dad on his ghost tour. it turns out to be fairly easy: pass out fliers, let her dad know how much time is left at each stop, and don't let anyone alone on the bus. Got it! She sees movement at one stop and goes onboard to find no one. She swears she saw something and finally sees a boy who is dressed rather oddly. Before the night it out, she finds a paper with the number 396.

Claire believes in science, yet she's just seen a ghost who appears to only her. Why her? What makes her so special? Claire will have to deal with this problem alone. Her best friend, Casley, has been hanging out with Emily whom Claire can't give the time of day to because she's so shallow--only talks about makeup. What does Casley see in her? Claire also can't talk to her dad. If she did, the stupid tour would stop at their house! The ghost haunts Claire, leaving her drawer full of water and her clothes soaking wet. I won't even tell you about the scene in the bathroom at home. She finally has to tell her brother, Sam, after several harrowing hauntings. After the ghost follows her to school and gives her one frightening moment in the bathroom, Claire has to tell Casley because she finds Claire huddled in the bathroom terrified. Casley vouches for Emily as a good sleuth and with Sam, they all are determined to find out what the ghost wants.

I actually thought this scary novel was pretty good for a scary novel. The hauntings were truly scary. The ghost doesn't talk and he's not benevolent with his interactions. It would be truly frightening to have these things happen to you! Some didactic passages about friendship reveal the value of being open-minded and giving people a chance, but they don't take from the novel. They're good lessons that even adults should not forget. I don't think the cover reflects the novel--at least, not to me. Don't judge the book by its cover. It's a good novel with characters who are very real-to-life. They will act like you act, so you'll feel like you are reading about kids you know. If you like scary novels, read this one first of your choices on the Lone Star list this year. ( )
  acargile | Apr 3, 2022 |
Claire is scared by the paranormal. So when she is made to help out on her dad's Chicago ghost tour and sees a mysterious boy, things start getting weird fast. She suddenly finds herself haunted by this kid in an old timey white suit. After several sleepless, horrifying days, she loops her brother in and eventually her friends. The group starts to investigate to try to find the identity of the ghost to figure out what it is he wants. It's creepy. The main character came off as a little whiney at times in the audiobook, but the story was compelling. ( )
  ewyatt | Nov 21, 2021 |
First Line: "If someone had told me yesterday that I'd be spending my Saturday morning in the aisle of a stuffy bookstore searching for ghost stories, I would've told them they were nuts."
Summary: Claire is the daughter of a ghost-obsessed writer slash ghost tour bus owner. She hates that. She is a scientist and doesn't believe in that phooeoy. That is, until she is forced to help her dad on the bus. When the ghost follows her home she is forced to face facts she would rather not. To top that off, she's also has a school science fair to prepare for, a middle school she has to prevent from finding out about her recent outing (hello, rumor mill), and a best friend who might be moving on. Middle school is rough, but ghosts are worse.
Rating: 8 out of 10
Once again I read this book alone. No kiddos. It's too long for the little's consideration, and it's a bit scary for the bigger of the two. Perhaps this should be more of a "Mama Lala Reads" blog, as I'm reading these books for my kids, but not always to. Anyhow...
My Thoughts: As an adult who remembers all too well how hard middle school was, I cried. It was a good cry, though. A "I finally can approach this with understanding" cry. I, too, had a friend who moved on without me. I acted much like Claire. Unfortunately, life isn't like the books, and our ending didn't turn out like this book's ending for Claire. Then again, I've never been haunted quite like Claire has, and I count that a blessing. This book definitely gives the creepies. It's a great read for all those creepy kids out there... and their parents too. It addresses real life issues like divorce, friendship, and *gasp* crushes, all while entertaining the reader with a plot line a bit more theatrical. For the cherry on top, it has a historically accurate thread as well.
All in all a great read. Points only discounted for giving a too perfect wrap up. Life isn't pretty, and sometimes endings have to be a little ugly, too (twelve year olds don't know how to work out those kind of relationship issues.) ( )
  chelsea.carmanmoore | Jul 26, 2021 |
It all starts when Claire agrees to help her dad on a Chicago ghost tour. She isn't interested in the paranormal in any way. Claire is all about science, not spooks. But her dad runs a ghost tour company...and asks for her help. Reluctantly, she agrees. One Saturday night counting ghost fans to make sure everyone is on the bus won't kill her. But then she sees a sad little boy in the back of the bus....he's wearing very out of date clothing and just seems....odd. Claire can't remember counting him when the tour started....and he isn't there anymore when the night wraps up. Hmmm.....weird....but that should be the end of it, right?

Wrong.

Then the scratching sounds start. A quiet scratching inside the walls of her room. And her dresser is full of water. Claire has brought a ghost home with her!

This book is just such an awesome middle grade level spooky read! It weaves real Chicago history in with the fiction. I have a list of real places and stories I just have to look up and read about now! The atmosphere and pacing are perfect. I liked the characters, and the premise. When I was in seventh grade, I most likely would have been embarrassed if my dad ran a ghost tour company, too! Claire learns some valuable lessons, becomes closer to her brother, and learns many lessons while investigating the spirit who followed her home.

The cover art for this book is just fantastic!

This is the first book by Lindsay Currie that I've read. I love ghost stories! And the fact that this tale includes actual history of the Chicago area made the book so much more interesting to me! I'm definitely going to read more by this author!

**I voluntarily read a review copy of this book from Sourcebooks. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.** ( )
  JuliW | Nov 22, 2020 |
Showing 4 of 4
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For fans of Small Spacescomes a chilling ghost story about a malevolent spirit, an unlucky girl, and a haunting mystery that will tie the two together. Claire has absolutely no interest in the paranormal. She's a scientist, which is why she can't think of anything worse than having to help out her dad on one of his ghost-themed Chicago bus tours. She thinks she's made it through when she sees a boywith a sad face and dark eyes at the back of the bus. There's something off about his presence, especially because when she checks at the end of the tour...he's gone. Claire tries to brush it off, she must be imagining things, letting her dad's ghost stories get the best of her. But then the scratching starts. Voices whisper to her in the dark. The number 396 appears everywhere she turns. And the boy with the dark eyes starts following her. Claire is beinghaunted. The boy from the bus wants something...and Claire needs to find out what before it's too late.

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