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The Grave Digger

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really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  28 ratings  ·  26 reviews
In 1875 Ohio, twelve-year-old Cap Cooper is an aspiring inventor—and a reluctant graverobber—enlisted by his father to help pay for his mother’s medical expenses. When one of the dead returns to life at his touch, Cap unearths a world of dark secrets that someone at the local medical school wants to keep buried. On the brink of discovery, he’ll have to use every ounce of c ...more
Hardcover, 192 pages
Expected publication: October 29th 2019 by Amberjack Publishing
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really liked it 4.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  28 ratings  ·  26 reviews


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Montzalee Wittmann
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Grave Digger by Rebecca Bischoff is an awesome middle grade book I requested from NetGalley and the review is voluntary. This is such a good book! It is set in 1875 or so and it features a 12 year old boy, Cap, drafted by his dad to help rob graves with a very horrible person. What happens from there in the town, between his friends, and how he feels about himself is very interesting. Also the are some other mysteries to be solved that no one seems to notice except Cap! There is suspense, gr ...more
Mary
May 18, 2019 rated it liked it
The premise is interesting—a bright kid who’s pulled into grave robbing by his dad, and somehow ends up (accidentally) bringing the dead back to life. And the bigger mystery is who is funding these grave robberies, and what are they doing with the bodies?

I tried to put myself in the mindset of a twelve-year-old while reading this, and unfortunately it still fell kind of flat.

My two biggest issues were the characters (as in all of the ones we should care about) never seemed to fully develop, and
...more
gem
May 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is perfect for fans of Derek Landy and Jonathan Stroud, it’s full of dark humour and and creepy goings on...
Cap Cooper is a great character! He’s laugh out loud funny and constantly getting himself in stupid situations. He becomes embroiled in the stealing bodies and after one particularly interesting night thinks he has the power to raise the dead! What ensues is a series of ever more dangerous escapades.
I know it’s set in America after the civil war but I was actually picturing it set in
...more
Mercedes
May 26, 2019 rated it liked it
2.5 Stars

When I started this book, I think I was expecting something along the lines of Neil Gaiman's 'The Graveyard Book'...that is not at all when I got.

While this was by no means a terrible story, I just found the whole thing...unsettling.

Cap is a 12 year old boy who's enlisted to help his father and another, rather nasty fellow, help steal some recently dead bodies from the local graveyard in exchange for some much needed money to help his sick mother. I realize this book is touted as a Midd
...more
Laurie
May 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Cap Cooper is a 12-year-old boy living in Ohio in 1875. In order to pay for his mother’s doctor bill, his father takes work as a grave robber. When Cap is made to help he finds things are not as they seem…more people seem to be dying. And when one of the dead comes back to life, Cap must find answers before those he loves get hurt.

I don’t normally read or review YA or Children’s Fiction, but when I saw the cover, then read the description for the Grave Digger, it intrigued me. I found that I rea
...more
Teresa Barrera
Jul 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
This story is set in the 1800's and tells a story about a young 12 year old boy named Cap who gets dragged in by his father who works for a nasty man named Lum, grave robbing.
His father needs the money for medical needs for Cap's mother who is pregnant and ill and Cap has no choice but to help his father dig the graves and remove the bodies.
But things don't sit well with Cap and after discovering more than one body coming back to life after his touch, he's set out to find out if his gift is real
...more
Arin Barry
I think 12/13 year old Arin would have loved this book. It’s about a bright kid - Cap- who is roped into grave robbing by his dad to help pay his mom’s medical bills. While on one of their “jobs” Cap realised the body they’re stealing is one of his friends and somehow he brought her back to life.

It was a cute and easy read, I just wished the book went into more detail on the subplots sprinkled through the book, but I doubt a child will have the same hang ups as me XD

I received a free eARC from N
...more
Kathryn Fletcher
Jun 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was given this ARC book in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley.

Grave Digger
by Rebecca Bischoff
Amberjack Publishing
192 pages
Release date: October 2019


I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I’ve not heard of this author before now. This is her second book to be published. I’ve started a few books by new authors in NetGalley that were poorly written. (I chose not to review those) This one was really good though! Here is a screenshot of page one, so you get a sample of the writing. A
...more
Amy
Jun 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for a copy of this book.

I wasn't sure what to expect going into this book as far as how spooky or supernatural it would be, and now that I've finished, I'm still unsure of how supernatural the story actually was., and have mixed feelings on the story overall.

What I liked:
Cap was a decent main character, and I enjoyed that the book showed a boy on the verge of becoming a teenager struggling with morals and his faith that his father would always do what was
...more
Kacey
Jul 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. As always, my opinion was unaffected by the free copy.

This is the sort of historical fiction I enjoy: it gives the reader a good idea of what things were like back in those days while giving an interesting story to follow. I think this will be entertaining for middle grade readers because of the mystery, and it touches on a lot of issues from that time. A lot of the characters are very morally gra
...more
Jen
May 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
12 year-old Cap Cooper is roped into robbing graves to help pay for his mother’s medical expenses. But he soon discovers there are some secrets that are best left buried…

The Grave Digger is a really unique read. The story is fast-paced and packed with mystery, creepy without getting too gothic. It’s rare to find a historical middle grade novel that addresses its context so well. The story covers several key themes – racism, the role of women and poverty – but its exploration is never heavy-hand
...more
Adam Christiansen
Jul 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I would like to thank Net Galley and Amberjack Publishing for an advanced copy of The Grave Digger for my review.

This book will be featured on my blog in a “Best of 2019 Middle Grade Fiction.”

I was delighted by Rebecca Bischoff’s The Grave Digger. I like the main character, Cap, a lot. He is kind and empathetic. The plot is compelling especially when one of the bodies comes to life.

However, what I really love is the storytelling of Bischoff. I think that she really understands her target audienc
...more
Entrada Book Review
May 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Grave Digger by Rebecca Bischoff is a period middle-grade piece.

Set in 1875, Cap starts helping out in the unofficial family business, the grave robbing business.

In a similar to John Bellairs, Bischoff has created a scary, creepy story that is entertaining for kids, without being TOO scary, satanic or gory. The perfect combination for a good scary tale. While some of the period dialog seemed to be peppered into the writing a bit too heavily, there was enough meat in the storyline to help the
...more
Kitty Pollock
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Having been born and raised just outside of Edinburgh I have grown up with stories of the Body Snatchers who supplied the medical universities of the city, none more prominent than the infamous Burke and Hare, so when I came across this novel I had to read it! Especially as this book is not based in Scotland but America. Interestingly, there are elements to body snatching that I haven't experienced such as the snatching of 'coloured' people and what was considered legal and illegal corpses. This ...more
Sarah
May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
The Grave Digger was quite the surprise, and in a great way. Cap gets roped into helping his father, and an unsavory sort by the name of Lum to dig up bodies for some extra cash that Cap's family so desperately needs. The tale only gets deeper, and darker from there but in a way which the intended age bracket would understand. I adore the author's use of history throughout the book, she doesn't sugar coat things and leaves the reader wanting to learn more about our history.

Honestly I was taken
...more
Jessica
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Set in 1875. In order to help pay his mother’s medical expenses, Cap is forced by his father to be a grave snatcher. When a mysterious epidemic starts killing people rapidly, Cap, his dad, and the rest of the team start getting a lot of requests for bodies. Soon, the community starts getting anxious because of the epidemic and the missing bodies of their loved ones. When Cap accidentally brings a school mate back to life, he begins to uncover some dark secrets in the town. Can Cap figure out wha ...more
The
May 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Resurrectionists, or body snatchers as they were commonly known, were active during the 18th and 19th centuries. Bodies recently buried, were removed from their graves and given to medical schools for students to use to study anatomy.

The Grave Diggers tells the story of Cap, a young man who helps his father as a resurrectionist. Hard pressed for cash, it was an easy, although dangerous, way for he and his father to raise money quickly.

This was an interesting and informative story. The author an
...more
Cynthia
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: giveaway-s
The Grave Digger by Rebecca Bischoff is a very satisfying read for children of all ages. While aimed toward the middle school age reader, I believe that many older readers will enjoy it as well. The illustrations by Tambe are charming and right on the money.

The subject matter, grave robbing and the accompanying mystery is spooky but not not too scary. The characters feel real as do their dilemmas. The Grave Digger is a nice way to learn a little of our nation's history while enjoying a good stor
...more
Jesse Carrasco
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Grave Diggers was a fun read. I liked the topic of the family needing to become Resurrectionists (grave diggers/body snatchers) to earn money for living. The macabre and supernatural elements to the story added a nice touch. There is just the right amount of suspense and surprise that will keep the reader wanting to finish. This is a great book for middle schoolers that like some sort of macabre to their regular fiction.
Danielle Wood
May 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review! This book was historical fiction with a twist of suspense. The creepy level was perfect for kids 10-12. It touched on several post-Civil War issues like race, gravedigging, and even a little bit of Women’s Rights. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked it! 4/5 stars!
Laura
Jul 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
An interesting middle grade historical fiction
Tfalcone
May 27, 2019 rated it liked it
Thank you NetGalley for the free ARC. Cap helps his father earn money by digging up bodies. But some f them come back to life and Cap is trying to find out why and what is going on. This novel was very dark and Dickensian in its characters. I really only liked Cap because of his inventor's streak.
Ea
A little slice of history, The Grave Digger centers around 12-year old Cap Cooper, residing in Ohio in 1875. His father get himself and Cap roped into a body snatching ploy to bring the family that bit of extra money, and Cap is quick to figure out that something is amiss when people are mysteriously dying and neither his father nor their accomplice will tell him what the bodies they dig up are for.



There were a lot of characters, and none of them seemed much more developed than whether they wer

...more
Sara
rated it liked it
May 25, 2019
Brigita
May 09, 2019 added it
Shelves: mg
The Grave Digger was a surprising read. I expected an adventure filled suspenseful tale but the novel was much more than that. It was very informative with the way it painted the time period authentically. There was mystery and adventure, of course, both aspects which would attract middle grade readers, but the story also tackled more serious issues in a thoughtful way. A very satisfying read.
MayorEmma
May 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received this book from netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

A mystery is afoot in Cap's town. People are mysteriously dying, and their bodies are being stolen, with Cap being roped into the scheme by his father, who is working with another man to do the dirty work.

Pluses:
This book reminded me a little bit of Burke and Hare, and the information about body snatching was definitely interesting.

Things I didn't like as much:
The foreshadowing seemed a little weird to me, as I got confused abo
...more
Bree Dumont
rated it liked it
Jun 05, 2019
Becky
May 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
In this historical fiction piece, the reader meets Cap Cooper, a pre-teen living in 1875 Ohio. His mother is sick and money is tight, so his father does whatever he can to support the family...even if it means becoming a grave robber. Cap is roped into helping his father and quickly learns that not all is as it seems.

This was a quick read and one that I think middle-grade students would enjoy. There is a little bit of everything in this story - mystery, suspense, history. The historical aspect o
...more
Angelina
rated it really liked it
May 20, 2019
Eileen
rated it really liked it
May 20, 2019
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