Alright, I'm starting in on the Mark Twain Award nominees for 2010! I thought I'd try to read them all this year, so I figured why not do it in alphabetical order by the author's name? Therefore, my first book is one by Avi (though I've actually read one of the nominees before I realized it: Leanin' Dog).
Horace is a young apprentice to a photographer in New York City in 1872. When his mentor gets a commission to photograph a high society woman so that she can place her picture on her dead daughter's grave, Horace gets his first chance to take a picture himself. But when he does, he discovers a hidden gift--the image of a ghost appears on his photographs. And the ghost seems to be coming to life through Horace's pictures. And she isn't happy.
Written in a way that will help children really get into the past, Avi has told a story that I know most children between the ages of 9-12 will appreciate--it's spooky, yet doesn't talk down to kids or sugar coat the time period.
Not a bad start to the new season of awards!