Kids Book: Phantom of the Post Office

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43 Old Cemetery Road: The Phantom of the Post Office
Harcourt Children’s Book/Thomas Allen
age 8-12
by Kate Klise, illustrated by M. Sarah Klise
160 pages

Synopsis from Thomas Allen:

The letter-loving trio at Spence Mansion has something to grieve about—Ghastly’s post office is about to close, which will cut off their connection to their fans. A new invention called VEXT-mail is threatening to replace not only letters, but books, hair dryers, and even garage door openers! Could the mysterious occupant of P.O. Box 5 and his seemingly sinister plan save the doomed post office? Will he strike down Ghastly’s beloved ghostwriter in the process? In this fourth book in the award-winning 43 Old Cemetery Road series, eleven-year-old Seymour Hope and his new friend, Wy Fye, must solve this postmortem mystery . . . before it’s too late!

With email, text messages and cellphone calls taking over the way we communicate, letter writing is becoming a lost art. The 43 Old Cemetery Road books are written as a series of letters and notes between the three main characters (Olive C. Spence, Ignatius B. Grumply, and Seymour Hope), and additional characters encountered within the story.

The mix of letter formats, notes, telegrams, and ficticious newspaper clippings make The Phantom of the Post Office a fun read as well as visually interesting. Adding text message-like communicaitons of VEXT Mail, the new mail service that threatens to take over the traditional letter, builds on the story that electronic messaging is taking over traditional communications. The contrast of different communications, the visual treatment of the text, as well as the use of puns and language in a fun way, make The Phantom of the Post Office an entertaining read. Toss in a phantom and mysterious messages and you have case to solve. The Phantom of the Post Office is the fourth book in the 43 Old Cemetery Road series.

You can find a copy of 43 Old Cemetery Road: The Phantom of the Post Office Me by visiting your local book store or visiting Thomas Allen. Visit our Kid’s Books section for other great book recommendations. What are you reading with your kids?

I have to thank Thomas Allen for my review copy.


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