It’s bad enough that Ariadne’s family just moved to a tiny boring town in the middle of nowhere. But worst of all is that she’s so far away from her best friend. The kids in Dobbin seem nice enough, but none of them really understands how lost and unhappy Ariadne feels.
None, that is, but May Butler. She’s an odd, quiet person who wears the strangest old-fashioned clothes and has a spooky habit of appearing and disappearing in the blink of an eye. Despite their differences, there is a bond between the two girls. May, too, knows what it’s like to feel lost.
Edgar Award nominee, New York Public Library's "Books for the Teen
Age," "Best Fantasy Books of the Year" (VOYA), "The Best Children's
Books of the Year" (Children's Book Committee at Bank Street College of
Education), Mark Twain Award nominee (Missouri Association of School
Librarians), South Carolina Book Award nominee, Volunteer State Book Award (TN) nominee
Ariadne's loneliness, her adjustment to small-town life, and her
suspicions of the new friends she makes at school and in the
neighborhood are right on the mark. Barrett crafts a fine ghost story that will appeal to those who like mystery and intrigue as well as a good regional story.
— Voice of Youth Advocates
Lots of peril, an intriguing mystery, and a young heroine who figures it
out on her own using inventive investigative techniques and a whole lot
of gumption—this is a great book for young readers.
Ariadne makes a convincing character, wrapped up in her own problems at
the beginning, but increasingly willing to extend herself to help others
as the story progresses. The adventure scenes at the end of the book
speed up the pace in a satisfying way and lead to a resounding
. . . just right for the diversion demanded by rainy days, long weekends, and summertime.
— The Horn Book
A genuine ghost story without coincidental explanations that will draw readers eerily in.
Tension arises from Ariadne's investigation of the colorful local
history and her attempt to carry out May's wishes. . . . The story
offers enough teasers to keep the audience going until the action-packed
— Publishers Weekly
Barrett's ghost is not of the horrific, goosebump-inducing variety, but
the near-fatal consequences of Ariadne's investigation infuse this
capably written tale with a pervasive sense of impending danger. Readers seeking spirited suspense without nightmares should look here.
— The Bulletin
For 12-year-old Ariadne, the summer before seventh grade just stinks.
Her family has moved from suburban Florida to Dobbin, Tennessee. . . .
Knowing she has to adjust, Ariadne tries to make friends, even with the
strange girl named May she meets in the woods. However, no one else
seems to know May, and before long, Ariadne starts hearing stories about
other people in town who have seen a girl dressed in old-fashioned
clothes who lives in the woods. . . . May not only helps Ariadne solve a
mystery, but also helps her find herself.
Ariadne has just enough Sherlock Holmes in her to try to find out what
is so mysterious about May and some of the people in the town she lives
in. Join Ariadne in her investigation of a most unsettling mystery. Read
Cold in Summer by Tracy Barrett.
— South Carolina Book Awards, 2006
Cold in Summer is a contemporary ghost story about a brave girl, the necessity of friendships and a discovery of a new home.
— National Center for the Study of Children's Literature
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