Review: The Castle Tower Lighthouse, presented by Patrick H. T. Doyle

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Castle Tower Lighthouse (Edgar Font's Hunt for a House to Haunt, Adventure One)
presented by Patrick H. T. Doyle
Armadillo Books for Young Readers (Ages 9-12)
ISBN 0978613201; Paperback, 213 pages

Patrick Doyle's "The Castle Tower Lighthouse" is a delightful summer mystery for young readers.  Patrick Doyle presents the tale of Edgar Font's Hunt for a House to Haunt (making the full title of the book a real mouthful, but a fun one).  The book is fun through and through, down to a puzzle at the end for the reader to solve on their own.  It's cleverly illustrated, and its tale-within-a-tale is engaging.

Doyle uses the conceit that the story has been given to him by Edgar Font, as recorded by Edgar Font's two grandchildren, Audrey and Garrett.  Edgar Font is a capricious adventurer, somehow past his prime yet ready to take on anything--including his two grandchildren, who are precocious but overall _unadventuresome_ children.  Edgar's answer to that is to drive them into the waters of adventure by making them integral to his summer's quest.

Edgar introduces them to the world of ghosts, as he outlines their intended journey--while not dead yet (and it's hard to imagine such a formidable person "passing on"), he wants to find a singular place to live out his eternity.  The grandchildren are appropriately skeptical to begin with, but by the end of the book they're reasonably well converted--all in the span of a day.  

It's a quick read, much more fluid than "wandering around the house and picking up clues" might suggest.  The characters are fleshed out, for the age range, and I expect we'll learn much more about them in further installments, as they learn more about themselves.  We're not told where they'll adventure to next, but there's a photograph marked, "Exploring the site for Adventure Two" in the back, and an arrow showing that it's "just over yonder".  (And a glimpse at Amazon tells us that Adventure Two takes us to The Fakersville Power Station; and that that will be available July 1st!)

I heartily recommend this for the young (it's marked ages 9 and up), and the young at heart.
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posted by kaolin

13 comments; 0 subscribers

Tuesday, May 29, 2007 / 02:38:43
Post a comment with the phrase "please enter me in your contest" and we'll put you in the raffle for our autographed copy. Entries will be accepted through June 4. We'll only ship to the US.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007 / 03:21:04
please enter me into the contest - my young daughter an avid reader and creative young writer as in my blog
on myspace - would enjoy such a book as she is always
looking for new books and always has one in hand as would I - she brings me alot of books from school to read lol
Tuesday, May 29, 2007 / 05:32:04
I recently reviewed this title as well, and found it to be both entertaining and heart-warming. I look forward to reading the next installment, available July 1st!
Tuesday, May 29, 2007 / 15:50:21
Sounds like a great book to have around when my son is a few years older (and I might sneak a read before then)--please enter me in yout contest.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007 / 14:43:43
Sounds like a wonderful read...please enter me in your contest!
Wednesday, May 30, 2007 / 15:52:42
I like the sound of this...please enter me in your contest.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007 / 16:31:27
Sounds like fun - if I win I know just who I'll give it to - after I've read it, that is!
Wednesday, May 30, 2007 / 20:22:44
Wow! Had my own adventure just to ask that you please enter me in your contest! Blessings
Thursday, May 31, 2007 / 05:00:39
I agree it is an adventure to receive this book. Please enter me in your contest.
Thursday, May 31, 2007 / 09:56:02
Lighthouses are a great backdrop for any story. I look forward to reading this tale. Please enter me in your contest.
Thursday, May 31, 2007 / 12:24:16
Please enter me in your contest. Looks like a fun read.
Tuesday, June 5, 2007 / 02:39:49
Quite a shining review. Please enter me in your contest.
Tuesday, June 5, 2007 / 02:54:47
Congratulations to chstress--I'll be contacting you shortly to verify shipping information!

And thank you all for participating--don't forget we're already running another contest, this time for Anthony Marais' "The Cure". And we've got plenty more lined up after that!

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