‘Tunnel of Bones’ by Victoria Schwab/A Review

‘Tunnel of Bones’ by Victoria Schwab
2nd Book in the Cassidy Blake series
287 pages
Scholastic Press
Release Date: September 3, 2019
Genre: Middle Grade

Synopsis:
Trouble is haunting Cassidy Blake . . . even more than usual.

She (plus her ghost best friend, Jacob, of course) are in Paris, where Cass’s parents are filming their TV show about the world’s most haunted cities. Sure, it’s fun eating croissants and seeing the Eiffel Tower, but there’s true ghostly danger lurking beneath Paris, in the creepy underground Catacombs.
When Cass accidentally awakens a frighteningly strong spirit, she must rely on her still-growing skills as a ghosthunter — and turn to friends both old and new to help her unravel a mystery. But time is running out, and the spirit is only growing stronger.


And if Cass fails, the force she’s unleashed could haunt the city forever.

My Review:

If there was anywhere in the world I would love to visit, it would be Paris! Going to the Eiffel Tower? Absolutely!
Sitting at a cafe with my favorite reads? I’m so there!

Touring the Catacombs and search for ghosts?

Image by skeeze from Pixabay

Well…you only live once!

Cassidy Blake and her family do just that in ‘Tunnel of Bones’, Victoria Schwab’s second book chronicling Cassidy’s summer vacation with her famous ‘paranormal-on-screen’ parents The Inspecters. She’s also learning about her budding abilities as an ‘in-betweener’, venturing into the Veil (the world of the Dead) to send spirits back in peace, with the help of her ghost-best-friend Jacob.

In this installment, Cassidy unknowingly awakens a powerful entity while stumbling into the Veil within the Catacombs ( the perfect location for ghosts!). A series of mishaps and dysfunction ensues, and it’s up to Cassidy to figure out how to stop this mischievous spirit before Paris falls into complete disarray!

Cassidy is someone who’s truly learning her skills as an ‘in-betweener’, and we’re taken along for the ride during every discovery, misstep, and confrontation. Schwab perfectly portrays Cassidy in the throes of innocence, while confronted with forces that she’s not completely ready for. She’s a twelve year old girl struggling to balance the need to be a tourist in a new country, while getting sucked into the paranormal realm to solve the puzzle of the spirit in question.

Thanks to Lara’s periodic guidance and Jacob’s own secrets of his past (which provide its own level of intrigue), Cassidy becomes aware of an entire new layer of the paranormal world…yet all that Cassidy longs for is the simple joys of trying a crepe for the first time, and visiting the Eiffel Tower with its stunning views.

Image from Pixabay

The chemistry between Cassidy and Jacob continues to grow. Jacob’s truth about his previous life is a constant weight hanging over their heads, yet they also enjoy the pleasure of maintaining the rules of their bond. The tension is maintained by Cassidy have more social encounters, which brings the loaded question of how much of her private life should she disclose.

‘Tunnel of Bones’ by Victoria Schwab was a very engaging story. If you enjoy stories that involve the paranormal and strong friendships, then this is the story for you!

Rating: 5/5 Stars

June Reading Wrap-Up

This wrap-up is very underwhelming, since I only completed two books this month. I very much wanted to read sooo much more (I was looking forward to reading Lisa See this month!), but June has been a stressful mess of job transitions and wedding planning. The drama of these two factors have not lessened by any means, so I’m thrilled that I completed reading anything! My poetry page was also pretty dismal this month. I can count the number of poems written this month on one hand. Stress really does a number on creativity!

I read one Children’s Literature book, and one Adult novel. Both books are fictional works. The genres were Middle Grade and Historical Fiction.

Time After Time by Lisa Grunwald
Genre: Historical Fiction
Length: 417 pages
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Source: Kindle (via NetGalley)
Standalone novel

Published on June 11, 2019

I received Time After Time through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I loved reading this story centered within a slice of New York City life in the midst of tension and tragedy. Throughout the story, Joe and Nora navigate their relationship while enduring the effects of World War II. Since I enjoy reading anything involving New York City, I dove right in. Even though this novel was set in the 1930s, it brought back memories of me travelling through Manhattan and The Bronx while living there.
Rating: 4/5 Stars

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
On a clear December morning in 1937, at the famous gold clock in Grand Central Terminal, Joe Reynolds, a hardworking railroad man from Queens, meets a vibrant young woman who seems mysteriously out of place. Nora Lansing is a Manhattan socialite whose flapper clothing, pearl earrings, and talk of the Roaring Twenties don’t seem to match the bleak mood of Depression-era New York. Captivated by Nora from her first electric touch, Joe despairs when he tries to walk her home and she disappears. Finding her again—and again—will become the focus of his love and his life.

Nora, an aspiring artist and fiercely independent, is shocked to find she’s somehow been trapped, her presence in the terminal governed by rules she cannot fathom. It isn’t until she meets Joe that she begins to understand the effect that time is having on her, and the possible connections to the workings of Grand Central and the solar phenomenon known as Manhattanhenge, when the sun rises or sets between the city’s skyscrapers, aligned perfectly with the streets below.

As thousands of visitors pass under the famous celestial blue ceiling each day, Joe and Nora create a life unlike any they could have imagined. With infinite love in a finite space, they take full advantage of the “Terminal City” within a city, dining at the Oyster Bar, visiting the Whispering Gallery, and making a home at the Biltmore Hotel. But when the construction of another landmark threatens their future, Nora and Joe are forced to test the limits of freedom and love.

Delving into Grand Central Terminal’s rich past, Lisa Grunwald crafts a masterful historical novel about a love affair that defies age, class, place, and even time.

Wish by Barbara O’Connor
Genre: Children’s Literature (Middle Grade)
Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux
Length: 236 pages
Source: Acquired from HC Library (Flemington, NJ)
Standalone novel
Published on August 30, 2016

I fell in love with Wish the moment I viewed the cover. Who doesn’t love a deep bond between a child and her furry friend? In the novel, Charlie is struggling to come to terms with being removed from her dysfunctional family, living with her loving aunt and uncle in Colby, North Carolina. As Charlie reluctantly endures daily life within a quiet community, she slowly realizes that ‘Home’ can be discovered in the most unlikeliest of areas. This book also tackles the uncomfortable topic of neglect in a tasteful manner for younger audiences.
Rating: 4/5 Stars

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

Eleven-year-old Charlie Reese has been making the same secret wish every day since fourth grade. She even has a list of all the ways there are to make the wish, such as cutting off the pointed end of a slice of pie and wishing on it as she takes the last bite. But when she is sent to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina to live with family she barely knows, it seems unlikely that her wish will ever come true. That is until she meets
Wishbone, a skinny stray dog who captures her heart, and Howard, a neighbor boy who proves surprising in lots of ways. Suddenly Charlie is in serious danger of discovering that what she thought she wanted may not be what she needs at all.

Professional Reader