Synopses & Reviews
Teenaged O – never call her Ophelia – is about to spend the summer with her aunt Emily. Emily is a poet and the owner of an antiquarian book store, The Green Man
. A proud, independent woman, Emily’s been made frail by a heart attack. O will be a help to her. Just how crucial that help will be unfolds as O first tackles Emily’s badly neglected home, then the chaotic shop. But soon she discovers that there are mysteries and long-buried dark forces that she cannot sweep away, though they threaten to awaken once more. At once an exploration of poetry, a story of family relationships, and an intriguing mystery, The Green Man
is Michael Bedard at his finest.
"Bedard's lyrical ghost story with a literary leitmotif features an adult character first introduced as a child in A Darker Magic (1987). A mildly famous poet, oddball Emily owns a languishing bookstore, the Green Man. When Emily's niece, 15-year-old O (don't call her Ophelia), comes to spend the summer with Aunt Emily, O, herself a fledgling poet, realizes that her aunt is haunted by the memory of a monstrous, Svengali-like stage magician whose magic seems dangerously real and who has left a trail of death behind him. Most of the apparitions in the bookstore, however, are innocuous, poetic types like 'MallarmÃ© sat hunched on the stairs, his plaid shawl draped over his shoulders, his pen poised over a scrap of closely written manuscript on his knees,' or the elusive Emily Dickinson. Complicating matters for O is a mysterious and seductive young man who calls himself Rimbaud, but who may not be human. Though Bedard's somewhat old-fashioned story has a loosely knit plot, it is propelled by two well-realized viewpoint characters and offers an atmospheric tribute to the power of poetry. Ages 10 14." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Michael Bedard was born and raised in Toronto. His novels include Stained Glass, A Darker Magic, Painted Devil, and Redwork, which received the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Canadian Library Association’s Book of the Year Award for Children. He has also written several acclaimed picture books, including The Clay Ladies, which received the Toronto IODE Book Award. His biography, William Blake: The Gates of Paradise and his picture book Emily attest to his interest in poets and poetry.