I didn’t realize that this book was for middle grade kids when I picked it up from the library, but I still enjoyed it. Yes, the chapters that are based on the Ghost Hunter’s explorations overly simplistic but they’re also incredibly creepy. However, this isn’t just a horror book: Jason and Grant use these pages to educate the public about what they believe ghosts are and to diffuse any fear that a kid would naturally feel when confronted with something that she doesn’t understand. The last part of the book is composed of Ghost Hunter protocols so that kids can run investigations of their own and the definitions of commonly used phrases used in the book to build reader’s vocabularies.
Take the ending of the investigation into Fort Mifflin: “It’s a great historical site. And the paranormal activity going on is what we call a residual hunting. These ghosts don’t mean you any harm. In fact, they probably don’t even know you’re here. They are just so attached to the place that they can’t leave. So they do the same things over and over.” pg 115.
Or during an investigation when a four year old sees her deceased grandma and her parents are flipping out: “Kids are very open,” Jason agreed. “Sometimes they see and hear more than adults.” “Because they don’t know they’re not supposed to,” Lyssa added. pg 193. And isn’t that a shame?
A fun resource for children interested in paranormal investigations, societies, or television shows. This could be a great read for a reluctant reader as well. Depending on the sensitivity of the child, Ghost Hunt should be just fine for second to sixth grade. There are some truly terrifying moments, but the overall message is about moving beyond your fears of the unknown towards new knowledge. I think that’s a message worth spreading no matter what your area of study may be.
Thanks for reading!