Elizabeth K.'s Reviews > Hannah's Winter

Hannah's Winter by Kierin Meehan
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's review
Jun 28, 2009

liked it
bookshelves: 2009-new-reads
Recommended to Elizabeth by: Horn Book
Read in November, 2009

This read (pleasantly) just like a random Scholastic book club paperback from my youth (not any particular one, but rather the concept) - kids solve a riddle hidden in a box of antique toys, and there's a ghost. The main character is a 12 year old Australian girl who is spending the winter with family friends on the west coast of Japan, so there are also plenty of opportunities for a character to suddenly share a trivia point about Japanese culture, language or history. What was that show on PBS where the guy would sketch a scene from a children's book while a voice-over read the corresponding passage from the book? This book would lend itself well to that treatment.

I enjoyed it for the pure value of "hey, let's solve a mystery, and oh, there's a ghost" and it didn't even attempt to shoehorn in any symbolism or message or lesson or literary value. Somewhat distracting was the narrative voice, which was a bit inconsistent and every so often was so discordant that I had to go back and reread to make sure I hadn't missed something. It was weird.

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