Thursday, October 12, 2023

I Always Heard Stay Away from Chicago


Stormi and I just had to add some spooky books to our buddy reads this month.  She has wanted me to read this book for ages and I'm glad I finally did!  So read on to see why and then make sure to visit Stormi at Storm Reads.

TITLE: Scritch Scratch
AUTHOR: Lindsay Currie
PUBLISHER: Sourcebooks Young Readers
PUBLISHING DATE: September 1, 2020
PAGES: 291   
SOURCE: Own Library

FROM GOODREADS: Claire has absolutely no interest in the paranormal. She’s a scientist, which is why she can’t think of anything worse than having to help out her dad on one of his ghost-themed Chicago bus tours. She thinks she’s made it through when she sees a boy with a sad face and dark eyes at the back of the bus. There’s something off about his presence, especially because when she checks at the end of the tour…he’s gone. 
Claire tries to brush it off, she must be imagining things, letting her dad’s ghost stories get the best of her. But then the scratching starts. Voices whisper to her in the dark. The number 396 appears everywhere she turns. And the boy with the dark eyes starts following her. 
Claire is being haunted. The boy from the bus wants something...and Claire needs to find out what before it’s too late.

I read this a buddy read with my friend Stormi who had already read the book once before.  She assured me I would love it and she was right on the mark!

For a MG book, Scritch Scratch has a pretty intense scary factor. Claire despises anything ghostly or supernatural which is not good considering her father's profession centers around just that.  She gets forced to assist him with his ghost tour one night and ends up bringing a little ghost boy back with her.  He does some pretty eerie things to get her attention and for a while, she really thinks he wants to kill her.  Does he or is he just looking for help?

I also liked Claire's dynamic with her best friend, the new girl in town and her brother.  Her brother teams up to help her become "unhaunted" and she initially fears she is losing her best friend to the new kid at school.  Currie really hits the MG angst right on the head and I loved seeing how this side component of the book played out.

If you are looking for a great spooky tale for your younger kiddos or even if you enjoy MG yourself, this is the perfect read for Halloween season.  I have already passed my copy on to a friend who is going to read it with her children each night.



  1. This is a MG book I might actually enjoy, it sounds very spooky😁

  2. Great this one was such a winner!

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  3. I do love a good middle grade read from time to time. This sounds wonderful.