Room of Shadows
Albert Whitman, 2017
There’s something odd about the house David Cray and his mom moved into following his parents’ split. Sure, it’s old and battered and a little off kilter, but that’s not all. With so many nooks and crannies, it seems like the walls were built to keep things hidden—or maybe from getting out.
David’s suspicions are confirmed when he uncovers a secret room next to his own. Inside, an ancient desk and a carving of a raven beckon to him. Suddenly he’s having wild visions during the day and strange dreams at night. Worse yet, violence seems to follow him everywhere, and he starts to notice connections between the terrible events happening around town and the stories of Edgar Allan Poe. Has David unleashed a dark force by opening the room? Or has the room awakened something in David that he doesn’t recognize?
“David's first-person narrative is presented in short, fast-paced chapters, with occasional commentary from Poe himself…. An introduction that might tempt readers to explore Poe's own nightmares.”
“This is a solidly creepy story with some great historical echoes…. Imagines a fittingly creepy, macabre ending to a brilliant but tortured writer.”
The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Kidd’s latest historical fiction novel mixes the macabre world of gothic horror with middle school angst…. Definitely recommended for budding horror hounds.”
School Library Journal
Ronald Kidd “draws upon Poe’s short stories and mysterious death, while constructing a lively and suspenseful tale. It’s an interesting idea for a ghost story, and one Kidd attacks with gusto….”