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The Death of Yorik Mortwell
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The Death of Yorik Mortwell

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  85 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Inspired by the artwork of Edward Gorey, Windblowne author Stephen Messer delivers a mock-Gothic tale about poor Yorick (alas!), son of the Gamekeeper at venerable Ravenby Manor, who meets an untimely demise—in chapter one! Worry not, dear reader, for Yorick returns in ghostly form, intent on revenge. In the course of his hauntings, however, ghostly Yorick discovers that a ...more
ebook, 192 pages
Published September 27th 2011 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2011)
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Leigh Statham
I *loved* this little book so much! Mostly because it was little, beautifully illustrated, and told an original tale of good vs evil that I can't wait to share with my kids. Also, Stephen Messer is just a really nice guy. If you have little ones who enjoy ghost stories, pick this up and read it with them. It's wonderful!
Clare Rossetter
Interesting ghost tale where the title character dies in the first chapter. The story was not really scary despite the subject matter. Yorik is charged as a ghost to haunt the manor house. As a ghost Yorik is not very threatening and he ends up following his own orders and not the others who try to use him in his ghostly form. The illustrations and the text reminded me of a Tim Burton creation. This is not my favorite type of illustration but I know the kids like it and the tale, while not frigh ...more
Jared
My son was given this book at his school's literacy night. Since he was in the middle of another book, I took the opportunity to read it.
It's unique in that it starts with the main character dying. From that point on he's a ghost, aided by a princess in a glade and the dogs he knew in life, trying to stop strange little creatures from taking over the world of the living.
It's a short book, easily read in an hour or two if you're uninterrupted, but it's an entertaining story. The illustrations ar
...more
Alexis Neal
An excerpt:
It’s not every day you come across a book where the hero dies in the first chapter. But in The Death of Yorik Mortwell, that’s exactly what happens to 12-year-old Yorik Mortwell, orphaned son of a gamekeeper at Ravenby Manor: he dies. Fortunately for the readers, Yorik does not pass quietly into the great beyond, but returns as a ghost.

[...] a delicious spooky and morbid tale that never loses its buoyant, childlike spirit. And with a [SPOILER] happy ending to boot, all but the most se
...more
Monica Kulling
The Death of Yorik Mortwell by Stephen Messer

“Rest in peace. Here lies So-and-So in their eternal repose.” These words are usually meant to be final, but not in poor Yorik Mortwell’s case. Alas! No sooner has the orphaned servant boy died then he’s up and running to avenge his death at the hands of Lord Ravenby’s son and to haunt Ravenby Manor, if only he can get past the demon-hounds and avoid having his mind “blasted into a million fragments” by the Dark Ones. Yorik is bullied by the officious
...more
Jesse
Rating: 3.5 stars.



The Death of Yorik Mortwell was entertaining, to say the least. It's a simplistic-yet-fun story of a boy who dies and comes back as a ghost intent on protecting an orphan sister we are given absolutely no reason to care about, as she appears in about six (or less) pages, and is hardly focused on beyond a springboard for Yorik's demise.

My main problem with this story (besides the lack of "Sister," who was focused on so little I have to call "Sister" because I forgot her name al
...more
Nura
ketakutan terbesar itu ternyata bukan pada sesosok hantu, monster, apalagi kematian. Yorik belajar itu semua dalam hidupnya yang singkat sebagai hantu baru. tewas dengan cara tak wajar, Yorik menyimpan kebencian terhadap pembunuhnya. tapi kebencian itu perlahan memudar saat dia tahu siapa (atau apa) yang ada di balik semua itu. ceritanya sih simpel, ga berbelit-belit. good versus evil. dan si hantu messer menciptakan karakter yang mudah sekali dibenci, macam si putri penunggu hutan itu.
Kátia Cristina
Great Book! Stephen Messer and Neil Gaiman have the same style. Gaiman darker than Stephen. Loved the book and learnt not to judge people, I kept judging the characters without really knowing them. We also learn not to lose our faith and that only the ones pure in spirit are protected from evil. It's definitely a book I'd love to read again.
Karen
Very amusing; I was quite charmed. It was less morbid than I expected--it's a sweet children's novel with scary-ish villains and a ghost villain. The style is earnest, but there's still humor incorporated.
Sandy
Yorik and his family are servants to the Manor, and after his father dies it's up to him to take care of his sister. This get complicated when he falls out of a tree and dies. When he wakes up as a ghost, he becomes the servant to another girl who wants him to spy on the Manor. But as things happen he comes to realize he no longer needs to serve anyone, and in fact, must stop the destruction of the world and everyone in it.
Zach Sparks
Even though this book is geared towards younger readers, I am still amazed at how much world building Stephen Messer can squeeze into so few pages. In some ways this felt like the retelling of an older fairytale but if it is, it's one that I'm not familiar with. All in all a good, if quick, read.
Emily Mellow
I liked the story but I felt like, somehow, the writing was a little bit stumbly when I would read it out loud. It didn't flow as smooth as the books I love reading to the kids, so I was glad to finish it ;)
Anyway, the story is magical, ghostly, and interesting.
Janni
This book was weird in ways that really works for me, with a faint touch of the same Diana Wynne Jones'-ish edge that I also very much enjoyed in Windblowne.
Coyle
An excellent, quick read. Great story line, interesting characters, and an alluring world. Highly recommended...
Elsa
Got an ARC at midwinter and read it on the plane. Middle grade novel for kids that like sorta spooky stuff.
Natalie A.
It shows how a brother loves his sister and will do anything to keep her safe dead or alive
Chris
Neil Gaiman should be jealous.
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2739688
Author of Windblowne (May 25th, 2010) and The Death of Yorik Mortwell (Summer 2011), both from Random House Books for Young Readers.
More about Stephen Messer...
Windblowne

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