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Chasing Ghosts Throughout History
By Jeremy Loudenback
December 1, 2002
The Ghost Hunter
macabre spook story, part detective thriller and part history lesson,
Trish Klines new series of books are aimed at getting reluctant
readers to pick up books by using a combination of suspense and
web-based innovation. Klines newest offering, entitled The
Ghost Hunter, uses web-based links to extend the storytelling
concept out of the book and onto the web page. Readers follow the
exploits of Cori Denton, a specter-spotting detective of the supernatural,
and her computer guru sidekick, Marta Santiago, as they solve historical
whodunits around the world featuring spirits from beyond the grave.
Each book focuses on an era from history and uses multimedia tools
to grab a childs interest.
the end of each chapter of the print book, readers are directed
to a link on the Internet, where a clue awaits the reader in the
form of a webscene. Astute readers can assemble the clues in the
webscenes to solve the mystery before the intrepid duo. Webscenes
are illustrations, animation, video or audio clips, puzzles or games.
Anything, Kline says, to involve young readers in the reading process
and pique their curiosity about the learning experience. While children
enjoy taut mystery and bone chilling visits from ghosts, they also
glean an appreciation of an eras history. The current selection
of Ghost Hunter uses the setting of the Civil War to teach children
about the grisly conditions of hospitals during the time. In order
to help ghosts trapped between the worlds of the living and the
dead, Cori and Marta must learn about the history of the time to
set things right.
Ghost Hunter And The Ghost of Gettysburg
a day where reading takes a back seat to the short attention span
of television and the fighting frenzy of computer games, Kline is
following the path many booksellers are considering: utilizing creative
approaches like the Internet to make reading a greater priority
for youngsters. In describing the impetus for her Ghost Hunter project,
Kline recalls repeatedly hearing about the problem of reluctant
readers in schools and the necessity of reaching out to them
in a way that would capture their interest.
many adults want to write books based on their learning experience,
Kline said. Kids cant identify with that. This generation
is growing up in a very visually stimulating culture. We have to
adapt to them.
positive reviews from such esteemed educational sources as Library
Talk and The Book Report, Kline has had The Ghost Hunter on the
market since June of this year. Initially, Ghost Hunter started
with a tale about the Civil War, but Kline has written two more
stories to entice young readers. This year has brought more and
more reviews from teachers, who hail her innovative approach to
reading that is based on years of various experiences in education.
Kline and partner Mary Kaiser Donev have penned over 50 childrens
books as well as software titles, videos and childrens television
programming. In January, Kline looks to premiere Earth Academy 7,
an adventure for younger ages with interactive exercises online
that build reading skills and teach about computers.
about ordering the Ghost Hunter books can be found at theghosthunteronline.com.
For a sneak peek at a Ghost Hunter adventure, go to theghosthunteronline.com/books/gettysburg/index.html,
and follow the links to adventure. Happy ghost hunting!
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