The book, Jimmy Stone’s Ghost Town is a cross between the Wimpy Kid series and the TV series Ghost Hunters. Written by Scott Neumyer, this book takes the reader into a 10 year old boy’s world of childhood problems, an alcoholic dad, bully victim, and ghosts.
Jimmy has a lot of problems for a kid. His dad drinks, his mom is gone, and he’s getting bullied at his new school. But when a classmate decides to give him some pointers on how to save himself from the school bully, Jimmy’s life takes a turn for the better. But then, on an adventure together in the woods behind his house, Jimmy and his new friend, David, find a challenge that will test their friendship even further-ghosts.
This book starts out a bit slow, with a lot of background information telling why Jimmy is in the new town he dubs “Boredsylvania”. The story really starts in Chapter 7 where David saves him from the class bully gang in the boy’s bathroom. From there, things get a bit weird and interesting, like if the “Wimpy Kid” series involved ghosts. There is a lot of mystery to the secret world that Jimmy and David discover, but it really didn’t pull me in like some books do. However, the cliffhanger ending makes me wonder what will be in the set-up sequel. Plus, there was some mild swearing that might delight any upper grader, but should be acknowledged for parents.
Overall, this book is an exercise in friendship and boy bonding. I think the author’s voice is something a Tween boy could relate to. There is a good mystery plot to it since Jimmy has to save the fantasy world of “Ghost Town”. It’s worth a try on your list if you like some paranormal/fantasy fiction for your child’s bookshelf. Give the book a scan yourself before letting your 10 year old delve in to it.