School is back in session and that means the Humboldt County Author Festival is just over a month away. Twenty-five children’s authors and illustrators will be visiting Humboldt County schools at the beginning of October, providing school children of all ages the opportunity to meet and learn about favorite titles from the authors themselves. One of those authors is Elaine Marie Alphin and her book, Ghost Soldier written for tweens and teens, is sure to be a favorite of many area students.
Title: Ghost Soldier
Author: Elaine Marie Alphin
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (2001)
List Price: $17.99
Although Alexander has always seen things that no one else can, his mother was the only one he ever told about it. But his mom has been gone for three years and now he and his dad are spending some time in North Carolina visiting his dad’s new girlfriend and Alexander is seeing a young boy in a Confederate uniform more and more often. When Alex realizes just who the young boy is, he discovers he has been seeing the past all along and now he has a purpose to fulfill.
This book deals with single parenthood and how Alex feels about not having his mom around anymore. Blended families are also explored along with interesting aspects of the Civil War and the amazing amount of young people who fought for both the Union and the Confederacy. It’s easy to see why this book is the winner of both the 2002 Society of Midland Authors Children’s Fiction Award and the 2004 Young Hoosier Book Award. The book is well-written and Alex and the other main characters seem like people that might actually live in your neighborhood. The historical aspect of the story brings the reality of the Civil War to a young audience in a way that is understandable.
Ghost Soldier and other books by Elaine Marie Alphin are available online from Amazon, Powell’s, and Barnes and Noble. Her books will also be available at the Humboldt County Library on Saturday, October 22; the last day of the festival. Alphin’s books can also be purchased at independent bookstores like these in northern California.
Rain All Day Books
1136 Main St.
Fortuna, California 95540
522 Hartz Ave
Danville, California 94526-3808
Willow Bridge Books
40044 Highway 49
Oakhurst, California 93644-8875