The Sword of the Spirit (Spirits 3) by Rob Keeley

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The Sword of the Spirit (Spirits 3) by Rob Keeley

Category: Confident Readers
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Jill Murphy
Reviewed by Jill Murphy
Summary: Third instalment in Keeley's supernatural series. This one moves the overall arc on a little further and we begin to see where it's going. We love these goodhearted, exciting stories.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 128 Date: April 2016
Publisher: Troubador
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 1785892533

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There are truths which must be revealed before the battle may commence. You do not yet know the meaning of the sword.

Ooh! Events are moving apace in Rob Keeley's Childish Spirits series. Let me explain...

... Ellie has been getting progressively more involved with the spirit world after meeting the ghost of Edward Fitzberranger, facilitated by her mother's job working for Journeyback, a company running historical heritage sites. The Sword of the Spirit opens when Ellie and her mum arrive at Holiley Castle, where archaeologists are trying to find the fabled Sword of St Merrell and a very annoying TV presenter is making a show about it.

Journeyback has booked a re-enactor knight to take part in the celebrations. But before the re-enactor shows up, Sir Francis does. Sir Francis is a real medieval knight and, would you believe it, an ancestor of Ellie's ghostly friend, Edward. Sir Francis has no idea how he arrived in the 21st century and is not a big fan of vegetables. Or bathing. Events quickly spiral when the sword is uncovered and a powerful force is released...

This third instalment in Rob Keeley's supernatural series moves the overall plot arc on quite a bit. Why is Ellie's father working for the strange woman who warned Ellie off ghost hunting? Should Ellie heed her words and stop her meddling? What is the true significance of the sword? But there's a story to be told too, and it's a story of lost honour and atonement for sins. Ellie will need Edward's help if she is to return Sir Francis to his own time.

As ever, I thoroughly enjoyed this Rob Keeley story. It's told directly and with a good heart. You can't help but like Ellie. She's honest - even when she is telling a few fibs to save her ghostly friends from discovery - and she has a very strong sense of right and wrong. She never stops trying to do the right thing, even if she is a bit gung-ho about it. But for the first time in this instalment, she is made aware of the possible consequences of her actions. We'll have to wait until next time to see how she tries to put this right. I have faith in Ellie!

The Sword of the Spirit blends high adventure with the supernatural and includes a good dollop of realist drama through the post-divorce conflict between Ellie's mother and father. It's nicely balanced between shivers and high jinks and you get the odd joke too. This time, I particularly enjoyed Tina, the straight-talking catering assistant. She's blunt and funny and delivers a few excellent one-liners. And she gets a plot point in a thoroughly deserved reward. The vocabulary is carefully chosen to stretch but never lose accessibility and the book will appeal to a wide range of readers from those emerging into confidence right up to the later stages of middle grades.

Recommended.

Before going for Sword of the Spirit, you really must read the first book in the series.

Buy The Sword of the Spirit (Spirits 3) by Rob Keeley at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Sword of the Spirit (Spirits 3) by Rob Keeley at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Sword of the Spirit (Spirits 3) by Rob Keeley at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Sword of the Spirit (Spirits 3) by Rob Keeley at Amazon.com.


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