When Josie and her brothers uncover a haunted camera, the Mothman legend becomes a terrifying reality that threatens their entire town in this spooky and action-filled novel.
Josie may live in the most haunted town in America, but the only strange thing she ever sees is the parade of oddball customers that comes through her family's auction house each week. But when she and her brothers discover a Polaroid camera that prints pictures of the ghost of local recluse John Goodrich, they are drawn into a mystery dating back over a hundred years. A desperate spirit, cursed jewelry, natural disasters, and the horrible specter of Mothman all weave in and out of the puzzle that Josie must solve to break the curse and save her own life.
Twelve-year-old Josie and her younger brother Fox love the auction house their family has run for generations, but when Fox takes a picture with an old Polaroid camera and a photo with a ghostly image develops, they are pulled into a life-and-death mystery. The ghost turns out to be that of John Goodrich, a reclusive local resident. Josie and Fox's father will be handling the Goodrich estate sale, and the siblings discover a moth pin at the mansion that is linked to a centuries-old curse and the folkloric figure Mothman, who begins to terrorize their Ohio town. Through out-of-body visions and John's ghostly guidance, Josie learns that a disaster is impending and that she must stop it. Debut author Hayes deftly balances the thriller elements of her story with resonant coming-of-age moments, and Hindle's eerie b&w cartoons tweak the suspense further. Filled with spooky events and featuring a truly devious villain, the book will have readers racing to solve the mystery, though some may need to sleep with the lights on afterward. Ages 8 12. Author's agent: Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary Agency.