|Ghost of Crutchfield Hall
Author: Hahn, Mary Downing
In the 19th century, Florence leaves a London orphanage to live with her great-uncle, great-aunt, and sickly cousin James, but a ghost in the house means to do her and James harm.
|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.40
Points: 4.0 Quiz: 140166
|Reading Counts Information:
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 4.20
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 53160
Common Core Standards
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Craft & Structure
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Integration & Knowledge of Ideas
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → Texts Illustrating the Complexity, Quality, & Rang
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 6 → Reading → CCR College & Career Readiness Anchor Standards fo
Kirkus Reviews (+) (07/15/10)
School Library Journal (08/01/10)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (10/10)
The Hornbook (09/10)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 08/01/2010 Gr 4–6—Hahn hearkens back to the Gothic horror novels of the 19th century with her latest ghost story. Crutchfield Hall is a gloomy old place, but after spending seven years in Miss Medleycoate's dour orphanage, 12-year-old Florence can only assume her new life there will be an improvement. In addition to her genial great-uncle, the manor's residents consist of Florence's severe great-aunt, Eugenie; her invalid cousin, James; and a few servants. The accidental death of James's older sister, Sophia, is believed to have triggered his current indisposition. Sophia's ghost continues to haunt Crutchfield Hall both figuratively and, as Florence soon discovers, literally. Far from the angelic creature idolized by Eugenie, Sophia proves to be spiteful, manipulative, and determined to avenge her death. While Hahn's literary references (including Dickens and the Brönte sisters) will likely go over the heads of the target age group, most kids will be too absorbed in the chilling atmosphere of the tale and Sophia's terrifying influence on the living world to care. A deliciously spine-tingling tale that even the most reluctant readers will enjoy.—Christi Esterle, Parker Library, CO - Copyright 2010 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 10/01/2010 Twelve-year-old Florence regards her move from a London orphanage to her great-uncle’s country house with guarded optimism. She is looking forward to meeting her cousin, James, but she is disappointed to learn that his sister, Sophia, who would have been Florence’s own age, has died. Her arrival at Crutchfield Hall finds her in ambivalent circumstances: her uncle seems very glad to have her, but his sister, her maiden aunt, is openly hostile toward her, and it seems that she is not allowed to see James at all, as he is sickly and cannot leave his room or be disturbed. She does, however, meet Sophia, who is coming into her power as a ghost, and who has malevolent designs on James that she intends to accomplish through Florence. While the tale is sufficiently creepy and atmospheric, it moves overly quickly to a climax and resolution that leave too many unanswered questions. Part of the problem is the underdevelopment of character throughout-the rage-filled aunt, the compliant cousin, the weak-willed boy, and even the manipulative ghost are speedily sketched stereotypes that depend overmuch on familiarity with the plot tropes to fill in the gaps left in the present narrative. It’s a serviceable ghost story for the impatient reader, however, with action proceeding pell-mell and the ghost herself truly frightening in her ability to rob the characters of their own volition; it could also serve as a quick and spooky readaloud in the days leading up to Halloween. KC - Copyright 2010 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Booklist - 10/01/2010 Twelve-year-old book lover Florence is thrilled to be leaving Miss Medleycoate’s Home for Orphan Girls to live at Crutchfield Hall with her newly discovered great-aunt, great-uncle, and cousin James. Six months before, James’ sister, Sophia, died in an accident, and Florence quickly discovers that Sophia’s ghost is haunting Crutchfield to punish James for his part in her death. Sophia is full of malice and pride, and as she grows in strength, Florence fears for James’ safety, yet she feels powerless to resist Sophia’s control. As in every ghost story, readers must suspend disbelief to avoid being tripped up by the inexplicable (most notably, Sophia’s ability to touch others and control their actions), but this short tale is a good choice for reluctant readers, especially girls. Just as she did in The Old Willis Place (2004) and countless others, Hahn once again creates a brooding atmosphere and a powerful, chilling ghost in a gothic mystery that explores family, the love of reading, and the dangers of revenge. - Copyright 2010 Booklist.