Book 46 of my 2017 Reading Challenge
read from July 18 - 29
Utopia, Iowa by Brian Yansky
Summary (via the book jacket)
Jack Bell has an unusual gift - or curse, depending on your point of view. And he's not the only one. In Utopia, Iowa, anything can happen.
For the most part, aspiring screenwriter Jack Bell is just your typical Midwestern kid. He's got a crush on his hot best friend, Ash. He's coping with sudden frostiness between his parents. And he's debating where to go to college - or whether to go at all. But then there's his gift-slash-curse: Jack can talk to ghosts.
Lately, the ghosts are more distracting than usual, demanding that Jack get to the bottom of their mysterious deaths. Meanwhile, the straitlaced Detective Bloodsmith, who doesn't believe in gifts or curses, puts Jack at the top of his suspect list. (Why else would Jack keep turning up at the crime scenes?) To add to Jack's troubles, his grandmother, who happens to be a witch, warns that an evil presence has come to town and is looking for him. As Jack is threatened by both human and supernatural forces, his ending is suddenly looking less The Princess Bride and more Braveheart.
I picked this book solely because I'm an Iowan. It was a quick read and I would read more about these characters if the author decided to make this into a series. I think it's geared to a younger audience and I will pass this along to my teen girls now that I'm done with it.
A Few Quotes from the Book
"Principal Thompson was not happy to see me again so soon. I wasn't happy to see him, either, but unlike him, I wasn't rude enough to say so directly."
"I got on my bike and rode off to the park. That was my first mistake."
"Other grandsons took their grandmothers to church or brunch. I saw mine off to the spirit world."