Something Upstairs by Avi

Something Upstairs by Avi book review Rachel Poli
Via Goodreads
Title: Something Upstairs
Author: Avi
Genre: Historical Fiction
How I got the book: I borrowed it from my cousin

Summary (from Goodreads):

When 12-year-old Kenny Huldorf moves to Providence, Rhode Island, he soon discovers that his attic bedroom is haunted by the ghost of a teenage slave named Caleb. Before long, Caleb summons Kenny back in time, where Kenny finds himself entangled in Caleb’s murder and deeply troubled by the century-old injustice. Ultimately, it is up to Kenny to solve Caleb’s murder or remain forever trapped in history. Part ghost story, part social commentary, this thought-provoking, hair-raising page turner from master tale spinner, Avi, is a perfect chilling summer read!

My Review:

This book was eerily good. My cousin had to read it for her summer reading for school and when she explained the premise of the book to me, I thought it surely can’t be true because the book states that it’s based on a true story.

I believe in ghosts, but ghosts being able to actually talk to you instead of send signs and miracles as well as going back in time, seem a little far-fetched.

Yet, my interest was piqued and I read the 140-page book in one sitting.

The characters were interesting as Kenny, the protagonist, moves into a new home only to find a ghost haunting his bedroom. The ghost, Caleb, is 16-years-old and was a slave during his life. He was murdered and wants Kenny to help him figure out who murdered him so he can finally rest in peace.

Kenny does research about the past and his house at the library learning a lot about Caleb and the dates that he was alive. True or not, this story is a fun history lesson.

Caleb and Kenny go back in time where Caleb is alive and Kenny, not existing yet, is a ghost. They confront the murderer and… Well, you’ll have to read it for yourself.

When I finished the book I Googled the murderer’s name. Sure enough, these people were real and it’s one of those things that if you decide to believe, then it’s true.

It was a quick, thrilling read and definitely intriguing as you wonder what’s real and what’s not. Avi did a great job interpreting the story and it was hard to put down.

Something Upstairs by Avi gets 5 out of 5 stars.

Favorite Quote:

“Is memory real? Can you kill a memory? Change it?” –Avi, Something Upstairs

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19 thoughts on “Something Upstairs by Avi

  1. *shivers* every time I hear based on a true story, I wonder how much is fact and how much is author’s prerogative. Sounds like a book I would have read at that age too, and perhaps now too haha! A very interesting premise.

  2. Can one change memories? Our historical perspective slightly changes a memory every time we re-tell what we remember about what happened. This is a proved phenomenon, and soon we come to believe the changed/altered memory rather than the actual facts that happened. Can we kill a memory? Would we want to? I guess I’ll have to make time to read the book and find out. You picked a good book to take on and review, here.

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