Saturday, April 9, 2016

Nostalgia Read: Haunted House by Peggy Parish

Haunted House (Liza, Bill & Jed Mysteries)
Author: Peggy Parish

Amelia Bedelia author, Peggy Parish, also wrote the 6-book Liza, Bill & Jed Mysteries series. Haunted House is the 3rd book in the series. This book was a nostalgia read for me because I remember my 2nd grade teacher reading it out loud to us in class in the 70's. 1976 to be exact. I remember the year because our classroom was all decorated in red, white and blue for the bicentennial. I can remember Mrs. Schultz sitting on a stool at the front of the class reading us this book. It's funny what school memories stick with us, isn't it?

I found this book at a garage sale. I stopped by because I noticed they had boxes of books. I'm always a sucker for looking through boxes of old books. You never know what you might find! Down in a box of old paperbacks, there was a worse-for-wear copy of Haunted House. The back cover is missing, but front cover and the entire story is still intact. It came home with me.  If my brain decided to keep a 2nd grade memory of this book being read to me....then it's only fair that it have a spot on my nostalgia shelf. I think I paid a nickel for it.  
Even damaged, it was a bargain to bring my 2nd grade memory home with me.

The series has been reprinted several times since it was first published in the early 70s.  From information on Amazon, it appears the series was last re-printed in 2005. While it is out of print at the moment, the newer editions of the books might make it easier to find used copies. Definitely check your local library as well. My local small town library still has the whole series on its shelves.

The top photo is the cover I remember. The bottom is the updated 2005 cover art. The clothing definitely needed an update after 40+ years. lol. Gotta love those 70s fashions! I actually had a pair of the yellow and blue Nikes that the boy is wearing on the old cover. :) The picture doesn't show the swoop, but sure looks like my old Nikes to me! :) get to the review now that I've reminisced about 2nd grade and the 70's....

Liza, Bill and Jed are a bit upset when they learn their parents have bought the Old Blake Place. Mostly because it's supposedly haunted. They have just a few days to pack their things, then it's off to their new home. The kids have fun investigating the house, building a treehouse, and solving mysterious puzzles that begin to appear each morning.

This book was so much fun to have read to me when I was a kid. I remember the teacher handing us out copies of the puzzles that the kids have to solve in the story.. We worked to solve them as a class, then she would continue reading once we had the answer. I think the puzzles are what made this book such a long-lasting memory for me.  All in all, a fun book for kids ages 7-10 to read by themselves, or have read to them. Younger kids will enjoy the story, but might have a hard time with the puzzles.

My rating: 7/10
Ages: 7 & up

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