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The Screaming Staircase

Author : Jonathan Stroud

Genre : Young Adult

The Screaming Staircase is a delightfully entertaining book for young readers about ghosts, or rather, getting rid of ghosts. This is the first book in a series about three teens (all under fifteen) who have the psychic abilities required to see—and eliminate—the supernatural foes and ghosts (called Visitors) that are appearing throughout London.

Lucy Carlyle, their leader Anthony Lockwood, and George Cubbins, the researcher of Lockwood & Co., handle this dangerous work. They carry duffle bags full of all kinds of paraphernalia that help them in their work. Finding the Source of the haunting is central to the job, although they engage in other activities that provide protection as well.

There are some lovely descriptions: “The air in the house had that musty, slightly sour smell you get in every unloved place” “Inspector Barnes’s hair was lank and think, except under his nose, where sat a resplendent mustache, as coarse and tufty as a brand-new scrubbing brush. His age was uncertain; perhaps he was a lived-in fifty. To me he seemed inexpressibly old, one short step from becoming a Visitor himself.”

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