By: Carole P. Roman
Illustrated by: Mateya Arkova
Publication Date: July 2017
Reviewed by: Ellen Feld
Review Date: November 28, 2017
Susannah Maya Logan is at it again, and this time she's taking readers along as she tries to conquer her fears in the second book in the "Oh Susannah" series for young readers.
When we last saw Susannah, in Oh Susannah: It's in the Bag, she had just learned an important lesson about how to handle problems that seem overwhelming. In this book, Susannah tackles her fears of all sorts of things that "go bump in the night."
At the end of the first book, readers were left wondering how Susannah would handle the sleepover invitation from her best friend Lola. She wanted to go to the sleepover, but Lola's house was downright scary. It was old, the floorboards creaked, and there were spiders (eek!) hiding in the dark corners. To make things worse, Lola's brother Kai just loves scaring Susannah. He's told her that there's a ghost in their house...and now the frightened third-grader really doesn't want to go to Lola's sleepover.
Susannah is spending all of her time worrying about going to Lola's house. She had gone there for play-dates and so she knew that the house was full of dark corners and strange noises. Last time she was there a spider somehow climbed in, and then out, of her shoe! As the day of the sleepover approached, Susannah replayed those events over and over in her mind. The more she thought, the more frightened she became. What was she going to do?
Because she was so busy worrying about the sleepover, Susannah had completely forgotten about "The Plaster Party Event." This was a fun charity event where Susannah would get to see her friend Macy. Macy was a great friend and Susannah loved seeing her - too bad they lived so far apart. At the event, because Macy was blind, Susannah would help her with whatever ceramic project Macy wanted to make. She thought it was going to be just a fun party, but Susannah was going to learn something very important about facing your fears.
Soon the day of the sleepover arrived - would what Susannah learned with Macy help? Would she be chased by a ghost? Would she run into some creepy, crawly spiders or would the night pass quietly into morning? She wasn't sure, but she was about to find out...
In the first book in this new series, young readers learned a valuable lesson along with the protagonist about how to deal with problems, especially those that can overwhelm a person. In this story, readers will follow along with Susannah to see how/if she conquers her fears. What child isn't afraid of the dark at some point in their lives? Ghosts and spooky creatures have inhabited many a child's dream, and in this fun tale, children will see how somebody deals with those fears. Without getting preachy, the author manages to show readers how to handle fears that may seem overpowering. Kudos to the author for another story that teaches a lesson while also being a "whole lotta fun" to read.
Quill says: A satisfying follow-up to the first book in the "Oh Susannah" series. Early readers will love learning how Susannah deals with a very scary problem.
For more information on Oh Susannah: It's in the Bag (An Oh Susannah Story), please visit the author's website at: www.caroleproman.com