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Help! I'm a Prisoner in the Library!
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Help! I'm a Prisoner in the Library!

(Jo-Beth and Mary Rose Mysteries)

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  990 ratings  ·  120 reviews
Two girls spend an adventure-filled night trapped inside the public library.
Hardcover, 96 pages
Published February 1st 1991 by Turtleback Books (first published October 24th 1979)
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Feb 14, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A relentless blizzard, a spooky old mansion, a pair of lost kids...everything is here for an exciting mystery story. With the third Onetree child due to be born any day, Mr. Onetree is driving his other kids—Mary Rose (age ten) and Jo-Beth (seven)—to go stay with their Aunt Madge, when his car runs out of gas. After admonishing the sisters to remain in the locked vehicle, Mr. Onetree trudges off to a gas station through the snowfall, but the plan goes sideways when Jo-Beth needs to use a bathroo ...more
Kailey (BooksforMKs)
I remember loving this book when I was a kid, and I fantasized about spending the night in a library.

Jo-Beth and Mary Rose are sisters who get stranded in a library during a blizzard. The library displays and mannequins depicting literary characters are creepy in the dark, and there are weird noises coming from upstairs. The sisters find an injured librarian, and have to use all their common sense to help her and get themselves rescued from the blizzard.

The simple writing style makes this a per
Jan 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
The main characters are Maryrose and Jo-beth. Maryrose is older then Joe-beth and they are sisters.The plot of this story is for Maryrose and Joe-beth to find a way out of the library. When Maryrose, Joe-beth, and their father ran out of gas in the middle of a blizzard, their father has to go get help. He tells them to stay in the car but Joe-beth says she has to go to the bathroom really bad so, Maryrose brings her to the closest place the public library. Once they get into the library the lig ...more
Nov 21, 2008 rated it liked it
Just read this with my son. He thought it was funny. I on the other hand wasn't to thrilled by the plot. The title Help! I'm a Prisoner in the Library, had such promise to be more exciting. Yet, this is a children's book, and I had fun reading it to him.
Tara Calaby
I hadn't realised they were making Apple Scholastic paperbacks as far back as 1979! That little revelation was the most exciting thing about this book.
Feb 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I remember that in third grade our school librarian read this whole book out loud to us. I loved it then and I love it now! Only now, I am the one reading it out loud to kids.
Kitty Tomlinson
May 26, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
Mary Rose, a 10 year old and her little sister JoBeth become stranded in a public library during a blizzard after their father runs out of gas while on the way to take the 2 girls to an aunt in Indianapolis while their mother delivers their new sibling. Fun read. Cute children's book.
Feb 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Fun and quick - not too out of date for how the cover looks :)
The Book Girl (Andrea)
May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Review to come.
Jan 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Read this on a cold, snowbound night. Which, in keeping with the ambience and atmosphere of the story, is perfect. Some very interesting set pieces, to be sure. I will admit I expected a more sinister and sly and satisfying exploration of a library after hours, after lights-out, after the click of the lock on the door - something more along the lines of The Strange Library (Murakami).

I purchased this book in a Bag for a Buck deal at the semi-annual library book sale - based upon the strength of
D.M. Dutcher
Jun 10, 2011 rated it liked it
Small little chapter book about two girls stuck in a library during a big snowstorm. Very nice characterization and detail for a book only 95 pages and written for young readers. The big problem though is the book is premised on some very bad advice. The two girls leave their car while it's out of gas during a snowstorm to find a bathroom. It turns out all right, but it's not the best way to start.

It's also not the type of story I'd write. I picked it up because of research, and because it has a
Nov 12, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 3rd & 4th graders
If you believe in banshees, ghosts, and fortunetellers you will definitely want to read Help! I’m a Prisoner in the Library by Eth Clifford. One stormy and blizzardy night, ten year old Mary Rose and her seven year old sister Jo-Beth get locked in at the "Finton Memorial Library for Children" and their lives are forever changed. When they finally stumble upon the librarian they think they are in luck, however it’s possible that their troubles have just begun. It’s possible that there is a logica ...more
Aug 03, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childhood
Another example of the Kids Should Not Be Here genre. (See also: Secrets of the Shopping Mall and From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler.) I'm a librarian, and I've occasionally worked at the reference desk at night, or found that I was the last person to leave the library at the end of the day, and whenever that happens, I think of this book and step a little livelier.
Apr 07, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Our girls liked this story about a couple of sisters who are locked inside a library after closing. It's a little bit scary, but not overly so.

It's a suspenseful tale and it shows the two sisters cooperating and helping one another in their difficult predicament (although of course, there are a few moments of sisterly bickering too.)

It's a fairly fast read, with enough excitement to keep them wanting more. I like that it's set in a library, one of our favorite places to visit.
Mar 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 3rd-grade
What a cute story about two sisters trapped in a small library at night during a blizzard. It may be an older book, but I think it would still have a lot of appeal to kids today. I think it would be especially good for the reluctant reader with it's small chapters. I'm excited to have my summer book discussion group read it.
Dec 22, 2011 rated it liked it
Two sisters seek shelter and a bathroom in a snowstorm and are accidentally locked into a old home turned children's library. The girls find all kinds of thing that seem scary in a dark building. The hear a thud and a groan and shakily climb the stairs to investigate. A slightly scary story for 2-3 grades.
Jan 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-with-kids
Don't read it at night to young kids! However, even though it is "scary" for little kids, we find ourselves laughing and laughing in parts of it! As I read aloud I softened a little bit of the bantering for the first 40% of the book between the two sisters!
Mar 21, 2009 rated it liked it
i was okay..the story was sort of pathetic. 2 girls get locked in the library which they think is haunted in stormy and snowy night. no elctricity, no phones, no light, scary noises, freaky dolls, dead woman,.....
Aug 31, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ghislaine by: found it on the shelf
Cute story about two sisters, 10 and 7, who get locked in a library during a blizzard. My question is, who wouldn't want to get locked in a library in a blizzard, especially since there is a comfy couch and a blazing fireplace upstairs.
Jun 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read this with the girls this past week. A little bit of a mystery and a few slightly scary parts, but overall the girls really enjoyed it and couldn't wait for their nightly chapter.
Oct 29, 2010 rated it liked it
A quickly read kids' book but fun. If I was locked in a library I wouldn't want help getting out too quickly.
Lynda Wylde
Oct 09, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens-books
What bookwormy little girl doesn't dream of getting locked in the library overnight? This is the fun story of two girls who do.
Sophie Heroux
Feb 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Liked everything about it.
Mar 21, 2009 rated it liked it
okay i guess. funny sort of in a weirdish way.
Nov 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I hope I'm never a prisoner in the library myself. But I would probably stay up all night reading all those books!
Jul 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
probably the fantasy of every goodreads user. fun ya. good read aloud for third or forth grade,
Feb 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Another one from my childhood. Stuck in a Library after hours with spooky stuff going on....I'm sold.
Jul 21, 2010 rated it did not like it
i did not like this book it was not verry exciting
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May 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
i remember reading that book when i was in 4th grade 4 VOYA! lol
May 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing
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