Childhood Thrills is a feature that recalls books I read in my childhood or adolescence that were special to me or "haunt" me in some way. I don't intend to re-read & review them, just simply share my memories and the feelings they evoke.
The Ghost Next Door by Wylly Folk St. John.
Here is another spooky book that I managed to find when I was young. I think I just automatically read any title with the word "ghost" in it. And that cover is awesome!
The story is about two friends, Lindsay and Tammy who meet a girl named Sherry who is visiting her Aunt Judith one summer. Sherry soon makes a friend that no one ever meets. Perhaps she is really an imaginery playmate or perhaps they just keep missing her.
Lindsay and Tammy find out that Judith's half sister, Miranda, drowned in a pond behind the house when they were children. Judith has been searching for an owl that I believe her sister had made for her. Sherry then claims to find the owl, but her Aunt knows it is not the same one because it didn't have "love in it's eyes." By the end of the story, the correct owl is found and the aunt finds peace over the loss of Miranda. It turns out the owl's eyes had "LO" carved in one eye and "VE" carved in the other.
I remember this book because first of all it is a ghost story and secondly there was a mystery. I remember wondering about the elusive owl (by the way, I love owls!) with love in it's eyes and was very satisfied by the conclusion of the mystery. I also liked how the ghostly element wasn't obvious (at least to me back then). From what I remember, I'm pretty sure that Sherry somehow discovered the tragedy of Miranda and was playing on it for attention. However, I do think that there is parts of the story that cannot be explained that left me with a sense of wonder. Perhaps how the owl was ultimately found. I may have to buy this from Amazon and re-read it after all!