- USD 8.99
Stranger Things meets Sideways Stories from Wayside School in this quirky supernatural middle grade novel about a boy on an unlikely quest to uncover an enchanted book to defeat an unearthly nemesis—from New York Times bestselling author Alyson Noël.
When he first started seeing ghosts, Max mistakenly assumed everyone else could see them, too. Now, after years of being blamed for the pranks of mischievous spirits, Max is determined to do whatever it takes to make himself normal. But when he’s sent to spend the summer with his eccentric grandfather, Ramhart, being normal becomes impossible.
Here in Glimmerville, bakeries sell enchanted pies, the lake is infested with mermaids, the town’s beloved ghosts roam free, and Ramhart himself is celebrated as the world’s most famous monster hunter. At first, all Max wants is to survive the summer, but the more time he spends in Glimmerville, the more he starts to wonder if he’s finally found a place where he can truly be himself.
But when a supernatural attack steals Ramhart’s soul, Max—with the help of a few new friends—must go on a quest to find his grandfather’s renowned Field Guide, an enchanted book that contains all the knowledge Ramhart has gathered about defeating unearthly nemeses. And if they don’t find the book fast, Glimmerville will crumble into chaos, and Max will lose the only person who’s ever made him feel at home.
Unlike those around him, 12-and-a-half-year-old white Maxen Smith has always been able to see ghosts, though he wishes he didn't. When his goal of an incident-free school year is ruined by a viral video of him fighting off invisible monsters, Max's father sends him to spend the summer with his grandfather, ghost hunter Ramhart Woodbead, "the Indiana Jones of the supernatural world." Max hopes to find a way out of "the wrong side of normal" by using Ramhart's book, Field Guide to the Supernatural Universe. Instead, Ramhart introduces Max to their family legacy as minders of the veil, tasked with keeping the balance between the realm's ghosts and monsters, and the rest of the world. When Ramhart is incapacitated, it's up to Max and his new friends—white Bex, Latina Jools, and Indian Krish—to save the world from a supernatural storm. Noël (The Bone Thief) weaves myth, folklore, and conspiracies with wry humor and bone-chilling moments, creating an entertaining deep dive into the paranormal. While Max's stubborn refusal to embrace his situation and insistence on being "normal" is sometimes repetitive, his narrative voice is attention-grabbing, ideal for this "anything goes" adventure. Ages 8–12.