cover image Pirates’ Curse (Ghost Hunters #2)

Pirates’ Curse (Ghost Hunters #2)

Susan McCauley. Celtic Sea, $26.99 (178p) ISBN 978-1-951069-09-4

A few months ago, Alex Lenard, 12, discovered he’s a psychic, after his mother died in the car accident that damaged his hip. Now he’s the apprentice and ward of Frank Martinez, a Mexican Class A federal psychic whose gruff exterior belies a tender heart, looked after by their friendly homemaking ghost, Mrs. Wilson. As Alex is forced to accelerate his psychic education, the haunting of a local New Orleans bar, which was the smuggling base of pirates in the 1700s, becomes Alex’s first case without Frank’s guidance. As blond-haired Alex, his white bespectacled cousin Hannah, and his Jamaican best friend Jason attempt to free the pirate ghosts—and uncover their lost treasure—a hurricane roars to life. McCauley’s energetically paced novel features meticulous worldbuilding and plentiful genre staples, including sigils, curses, and powerful friendship, while allowing space for Alex to grieve and reflect on mental health as he helps ghosts cross over and recalls his own recent life changes. Replete with a historically rich setting in which spirits have mingled with the living since 1900, this haunting French Quarter adventure will immerse fans of the series and draw new ones. Ages 9–12. (Self-published)