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Monday, 20 May 2013  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Genre:Middle Grade Adventure 
Word Count: 45,000 


Thirteen-year-old Matt Muldoon is content spending 7thgrade at Spook Hill Middle School jamming with his best friend Chester Tubbs and working on album art for their non-existent band. That is until Chester surprises Matt and drags him on stage at the Autumn Festival to perform a song they co-wrote. When Matt’s severe stage fright cripples him and he witnesses a mysterious girl in the crowd suddenly disappear, their chance at fame goes epically wrong.

When that same disappearing girl turns out to be a ghost, Matt reluctantly trades in his electric guitar for a magnifying glass. He teams up with Chester and reality TV-obsessed new girl, Grace Wu, to discover the ghost’s secret. What they discover is worse than any case of stage fright: a witch who’s been stealing the souls of Spook Hill children for centuries. And Matt Muldoon is slated to be her next victim.

They must uncover the witch’s identity and figure out how to stop her or Matt won’t make it past the next full moon.

His new plan for 7th grade? Get out alive. 


Two people knew that Matt Muldoon had 28 more days to live.

Matt Muldoon was not one of them.

If he’d known, he would’ve worried more about finding out how he was going to die and how to stay alive, instead of how strange and large the moon was.

The moon was bigger than Matt had ever seen. Standing on the hill, away from the large crowd that had gathered below, he could even see some of the darkened craters that stood out against the moon’s orange surface like spots on a cow’s skin. The moon hung low in the sky, almost threatening, though moons didn’t normally fall into the same category as wild boars, Spanish tests, and his sister. He wished he had his sketchbook and colored pencils to capture it.

“Matt,” a muffled voice called out, breaking his concentration. He turned. R2D2 approached him. “What are you doing up here?”

The robot ripped off its cardboard head, revealing the flushed face of Chester Tubbs. “Whose genius idea was it to wear these costumes anyway? I’m dying.” He gestured toward the gold PVC pipes that covered Matt’s legs and arms forming his C3PO outfit. “Wanna switch?”

“Pretty sure it was your idea.” Matt laughed. Though it was September, the air was thick and hot. Under his costume, Matt’s t-shirt stuck to him like shrink wrap. Seventh grade had started over a month ago, but summer still hung around and hadn’t shown any signs of leaving. 

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