The Carrefour Curse
Publication Date: January 31, 2023
The Addams Family meets The Westing Game in this exhilarating mystery about a modern magical dynasty trapped in the ruins of their once-grand, now-crumbling ancestral home.
Twelve-year-old Garnet regrets that she doesn’t know her family. Her mother has done her best to keep it that way, living far from the rest of the magical Carrefour clan and their dark, dangerous mansion known as Crossroad House.
But when Garnet finally gets summoned to the estate, it isn’t quite what she hoped for. Her relatives are strange and quarrelsome, each room in Crossroad House is more dilapidated than the last, and she can’t keep straight which dusty hallways and cobwebbed corners are forbidden.
Then Garnet learns the family secret: their dying patriarch fights to retain his life by stealing power from others. Every accident that isn’t an accident, every unexpected illness and unexplained disappearance grants Jasper Carrefour a little more time. While the Carrefours squabble over who will inherit his role when (if) he dies, Garnet encounters evidence of an even deeper curse. Was she brought to Crossroad House as part of the curse . . . or is she meant to break it?
Written with loads of creepy atmosphere and an edge-of-your-seat magical mystery, this thrilling story reads like The Haunting of Hill House for preteens. Perfect for late-night reading under the covers.
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“Spooky, dark, and enthralling. I didn’t want to leave.” ~ Cassie Beasley, New York Times bestselling author of Circus Mirandus
“Salerni’s gothic charmer is deliciously creepy and atmospheric … An enchanting and evocative tale.” ~ Kirkus, starred review
“Salerni enlivens classic horror tropes and gothic ambience, complete with a sentient manor house, blending wry humor with atmospheric descriptions to create Garnet’s compulsively readable first-person voice.” ~ Publisher’s Weekly, starred review
“Inspired by the TV show Dark Shadows, The Carrefour Curse is an inventive take on the supernatural that skillfully blends drama, humor, magic and mystery. The puzzle, spook factor and complex family dynamics make this a perfect book for upper middle-grade readers and fans of The Addams Family.” ~ Shelf Awareness, starred review
“A fun page-turner that touches on the deeper issues of family, identity, and what it means to pay for the sins of the past. [Readers] will appreciate the emphasis on spooky mysteries and family secrets tinged with magic.” ~ Booklist
“Suspenseful dialogue and pauses allow characters and readers to speculate on clues dating back from the 1700’s, and cliffhangers build tension to creepily escalate the plot and conflicts.” ~ Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
LISTEN to the BOOK CLUB FOR KIDS PODCAST discuss THE CARREFOUR CURSE with students from Atwater Elementary School in Los Angeles and celebrity reader Marta Kristen, who played the original Judy Robinson on the 1960s TV show, LOST IN SPACE!