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The Banshee
ISBN: 9780618821624
Author: Bunting, Eve/ McCully, Emily Arnold (ILT)
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Published: September 2009
Retail: $16.00    OUR PRICE: $2.99
     You Save 82%
Binding Type: Hardcover
Annotation: Terry is half asleep when he hears the wailing, rising and falling like the waves of the sea. He wishes it were a dream, but he knows it isn't. It isn't an owl screeching, either. Could it be the Banshee, the ghostly figure of Irish legend who wails outside a house when death is near? Full color.
Additional Information
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | Horror & Ghost Stories
- Juvenile Fiction | Legends, Myths, Fables
Library of Congress Subjects:
Banshees; Fiction.
Superstition; Fiction.
Family life; Ireland; Fiction.
Dewey: [E]
LCCN: 2008014581
Lexile Measure: 450
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 1-2, Age 6-7
Book type: Easy Fiction
BISAC category: JUVENILE FICTION / Horror & Ghost Stories
Target Age Group: Age 6-7
Target Grade: Grade 1-2
Grade level: Grade 1-2
Physical Information: 11.00" H x 8.50" L x 0.25" W
Lexile Level: 450
Bargain Category: Upper Elementary, Picture Books
Accelerated Reader Info
Quiz #: 132723
Reading Level: 2.7   Interest Level: Lower Grades   Point Value: 0.5
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q47704
Reading Level: 1.5   Interest Level: Grades K-2   Point Value: 2.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.
Publisher Description:
"SCREE . . . SCREE . . ." Terry is half asleep when he hears the wailing, rising and falling like the waves of the sea. He wishes it were a dream, but he knows it isn't. It isn't an owl screeching, either. Or the Flannerys' old cat. Could it be the Banshee--the ghostly figure of Irish legend who wails outside a house when death is near? Why would she come here?
In spite of his fears, Terry goes out to confront her. Is it really the Banshee, or . . . something else?

Contributor Bio(s):
Eve Bunting is a beloved children's author has written more than 200 books for young people. She lives in Pasadena, California.

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2010 Spring)
Convinced that he hears a banshee wailing in the middle of the night, a young Irish boy fights his fear and goes out to confront her. Though there turns out to be a rational explanation, it doesn't negate the suspense of Bunting's taut, immediate story. McCully's atmospheric watercolors add to the tension, whether depicting the banshee of the boy's imagination or the spooky-enough dark-of-night reality. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2009 September #1)

When Terry, a young Irishman, is wakened by the sound of wailing outside, he's worried that a banshee (the Gaelic omen of death) is coming for his frail brother, Liam. Reasoning that even a ghost may be open to a bribe, Terry ventures into the backyard with his "best thing," a prized peacock feather: "I'd give it to her. Then I'd ask her to go away and leave our family be." Bunting's evocative prose ("It's December in Ireland. Cold. The linoleum is ice under my feet") and McCully's moody nocturnal scenes, lit by harsh moonlight, make Terry's fears and ruminations vivid. And all the pieces of a ghost story are there: a remote, dead-of-night setting in a land well-known for magic; the sense of isolation that fear can trigger; eerie backstories and details (a banshee, readers learn, wears "a long black robe, like a nun's, only hers was made of cobwebs"). But these elements don't quite coalesce into a genuine chill. Ultimately, it feels like Bunting and McCully (who previously teamed up for That's What Leprechauns Do) want to reassure readers rather than leave them with goose bumps. Ages 5–8. (Sept.)

[Page 45]. Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2009 November)

Gr 1–3—With her usual flair, Bunting produces a lively, well-paced story, providing a full measure of tension and suspense. Set in Ireland and told in first person, the tale introduces Terry as he cowers beneath the covers one moonlit night while the wind rattles the windows and wailing sounds echo around the house. Fearful that a banshee—a ghostly figure of Irish lore that moans relentlessly when death is near—is haunting his family, he decides to offer the creature his most precious possession: a shimmering, beautiful blue peacock feather. In his ever-so-tentative but brave exploration of the backyard, Terry conquers his fears and matches wits with the screeching wind, giving a satisfying ending to this scary story. McCully's robust illustrations, delivered in rough-edged, cameo images alternating with spreads, spike the tension, and the dark-toned watercolors lend appropriate eeriness. Bunting's words and McCully's expressive visualizations bring vibrancy and believability to the tale. A great Halloween read but also one to share on St. Patrick's Day or any time of the year.—Barbara Elleman, Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Amherst, MA

[Page 73]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.