Ms. Yingling's Reviews > The Aviary

The Aviary by Kathleen O'Dell
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's review
Mar 18, 2012

it was ok
Read in March, 2012

Clara loves living in the Glendoveer mansion with her mother, Mrs. Glendoveer, and Ruby, the cook. When Mrs. Glendoveer dies, however, all sorts of secrets from the past come to light. Years earlier, the five Glendoveer children were kidnapped along with their nanny, and the bodies of four of them turned up drowned. The fifth child, Elliot, was never found, and the family hoped for his return. Mr. Glendoveer was a famous illusionist who was accused of using his magic to harm the children, and his career never recovered. He did, however, manage to use actual magic to place the spirits of the children into birds, and instructed his wife to take good care of them, not telling her what he had done. The only way for the spell to be broken is for Elliot to return. Clara, who has been told for years that she has a bad heart, makes a friend in a new neighbor girl, and the two try to figure out the family mystery so that the spirits of the children can be freed. They uncover more secrets than they bargain for!
Strengths: This is a good gothic mystery with paranormal themes that might go over well with Lemony Snicket fans.
Weaknesses: Some of the letters included are in a cursive font that is almost impossible to read. This, combined with the length of the book and the somewhat slow start to the action might make this a hard sell. It does have a Secret Garden vibe to it, somehow, which will appeal to adults.

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Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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Angie Good call on the similarity to the Secret Garden. Which ... if one can convince a kid to pick up ... they like. But convincing them to pick it up AND finish it? Hard. :/

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