Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Death (and further adventures) of Silas Winterbottom by Stephen M. Giles - Review

The Death (and Further Adventures) of Silas Winterbottom: The Body Thief
Stephen M. Giles
Sourcebook Jabberwocky
August 2010

They all received the check for $10,000.  And the letter.  They all needed the money.  But only one of them really wanted it.  Adele Winterbottom did not want to leave her dad and her books for two months to visit an uncle she'd never met.  But her mom threatened her with Ratchet's House, a boarding school that no one ever left.  Milo Winterbottom never wanted to see the man who killed his parents.  He would be fine if Uncle Silas dropped dead today.  But maybe he should go and make sure it happened sooner rather than later.  Isabella Winterbottom was running out of money. There were only so many times you could pilfer items from your rich "friends".  She did not want to go back to being poor.  She would not only visit Uncle Silas, but convince him that she was the only one worthy of his money, and she would do whatever was necessary.The three cousins arrive on the strange island with one thought - Uncle Silas is a weirdo.

The Death and Further Adventures of Silas Winterbottom has a cover that makes you believe this will be a light, funny, tongu- in-cheek sort of tale but alas, it's anything but!  Uncle Silas is creepy and sinister.  He rolls around in his wheelchair pretending to be nice but the next scene uncovers his true colors.

"Silas moved his chair forward rolling the front wheel directly over Bingle's right foot."

Someone tries to murder Silas but he senses it and gets away and then uses the attempted murder to carry out his own sinister plan.

"...the...children must never leave Sommerset.  Not alive anyway."

The Death and Further Adventures of Silas Winterbottom is a fast, engrossing read.  I kept trying to figure out what Uncle Silas was up to and hoping the cousins could figure it out before it was too late. I really enjoyed this one and give it 4 copies.  Hand this to a middle grader who likes mysteries and suspense with a just a little peek at danger.

About the Author
Stephen M. Giles lives in a shambolic apartment not far from the beach and spends most days wandering about his imagination – which is where he met the Winterbottoms. When Stephen is not busy writing he likes to collect old people and hopes one day to have enough of them to open a shop.

Stephen M. Giles website

Thank you to Sourcebooks Jabberwocky for this ARC.

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