Finished July 10, 2010
I've never read an Avi book I didn't like. The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle and The Book Without Words are my favorites, so far. This one is just as good.
It's set in the 1870's during the time when "spirit photography" is becoming popular. Horace Carpetine is apprentice to a photographer named Enoch Middleditch. Horace has been raised to believe in reason and science. He has also been taught to be ethical and fair. Therefore, when Mr. Middleditch decides to insert a spirit image into the portrait of the grieving (not so much) Mrs. Von Macht, Horace is upset. But he is convinced that the trick will give Mrs. Von Macht comfort. And besides, if he doesn't cooperate he will lose his job.
The venture takes a bad turn when Pegg, the Von Macht's servant girl hints that the relationship between Mrs. & Mrs. Von Macht and their departed daughter Eleanora, was not what it seemed to be. And the ever reasonable Horace discovers that there might actually be a ghost in the house.
This is a good and often creepy historical novel. I listened to the book on tape narrated by Steven Boyer, who did an excellent job.