Review: The Secret of Goldenrod by Jane O’Reilly

The Secret of Goldenrod by Jane O'ReillyThe Secret of Goldenrod
Jane O’Reilly
Carolrhoda Books
Available October 1, 2016

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Trina and her father move to a tiny town where they’ll live in and restore a gorgeous house rumored to be haunted. Though at first Trina struggles to fit in with the other kids in town—all she wants is a friend, just one friend—she soon meets Augustine, a doll who helps Trina face truths about herself and others around her. She finds the courage to reach out to her estranged mom and find new friends who help her bring the town back together.

Trina also finds a friend in the house, whom she calls Goldenrod. It’s often Goldenrod’s leading that prompts Trina to act, though at first she finds the old home spooky and worries it may be haunted, like the rumors say. As Trina learns to sense Goldenrod’s feelings, she also begins to listen and watch the people around her, which helps her connect to them and value them. As she learns to be kind and listen to others, she soon builds relationships with many people in town.

The spooky elements make this a great Halloween read, but the elements of heart make The Secret of Goldenrod a fantastic read for any season.

find-amazonRecommended for Ages 8 to 12.

Cultural Elements
Characters are white, middle class or upper class in a very small American town.

Profanity/Crude Language Content

Romance/Sexual Content

Spiritual Content
Trina’s dad insists there’s no such thing as ghosts, but Trina believes she senses Goldenrod. A doll also moves and speaks with her. A ball shows up mysteriously several times. The townspeople believe that anyone who has stolen anything from the house is then cursed with bad luck. After Trina and her dad move in, people begin returning items they’ve stolen, grateful to be relieved of the curse.

Violent Content

Drug Content

add-goodreadsNote: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.


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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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