The Phantom Limb [NOOK Book]

Overview

Isaac is the new kid in town. His mother, Vera, is in the hospital with a mysterious illness, and the only person left to care for Isaac is his distant grandfather. Friendless and often alone, Isaac loses himself in his collection of optical illusions, including a strange mirror box that he finds in his new house, left behind by the previous tenants. Designed for amputees, it creates the illusion of a second limb. Lonely Isaac wishes someone would reach out to him, and then someone does-a phantom limb within the ...
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The Phantom Limb

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Overview

Isaac is the new kid in town. His mother, Vera, is in the hospital with a mysterious illness, and the only person left to care for Isaac is his distant grandfather. Friendless and often alone, Isaac loses himself in his collection of optical illusions, including a strange mirror box that he finds in his new house, left behind by the previous tenants. Designed for amputees, it creates the illusion of a second limb. Lonely Isaac wishes someone would reach out to him, and then someone does-a phantom limb within the mirror box! It signs to Isaac about a growing danger: Someone who has murdered before and is out to get Vera next. The only way Isaac can solve the mystery and save his mother is with the help of the mirror box. But can he trust the phantom limb?
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
As this thriller begins, Isaac, newly arrived in town, is totally miserable: “A mental darkness surrounded Isaac. He was fourteen, and he had no friends.” His father has recently died; his pianist mother is in the hospital, leaving him in charge of his grandfather, who has Alzheimer’s disease; and the malicious Fitzpatrick twins are making his life hell at school. His only fun comes from the sophisticated optical illusions that he collects. Then odd things start to happen: the hospital staff starts acting strangely as his mother gets sicker. Isaac finds a “mirror box,” a therapeutic optical illusion designed to give amputees the appearance of still having two hands, and while he’s playing with it, someone else’s hand appears in the mirror. Soon Isaac uncovers evidence that his mother is being slowly murdered and that other pianists have also died under mysterious circumstances. Unfortunately, this collaboration is not one of the late Sleator’s better works. The characters are broadly drawn, and the hospital plot isn’t particularly believable, although there’s plenty of action and a genuinely sicko villain. Ages 14–up. (Oct.)
ALAN Review - Ty Hollett
Isaac's having a tough time: he just moved to a new town, his mom is in the hospital, and the Fitzpatrick twins are already stuffing him in his locker. Isaac spends most of his time combing through his optical illusion collection. He then finds a new one in his house: a mirror box used by amputees to ease the pain of the "phantom limb." But when Isaac puts his hand into the mirror box, a different hand appears—and then starts sending him eerie signals: is the limb trying to hurt Isaac, or help him? As he puts the pieces together, Isaac unravels clues leading to either life or death. In this fast-paced, riveting novel, Sleator and Monticone combine elements of the supernatural and murder mystery to create the kind of reading experience that goes by all too quickly. Reviewer: Ty Hollett
School Library Journal
Gr 6–8—Isaac, new in town and friendless, is having a really bad time. His mother is in the hospital and his grandfather has started to forget things. When the 14-year-old finds a strange mirror box in the attic, he does a little research and discovers that it was once used to negate phantom pain in someone with an amputated limb. He discovers that Joey, the child who lived in the house before him, first lost a limb and then his life. Now Joey is using the mirror box to communicate with Isaac to potentially save his mother from the same psychotic killer. It's up to Isaac and some newly found friends to rescue her from the hospital where she just keeps getting worse and worse. The premise for this thriller is promising, but the execution is not quite spot-on. Some plot points are a little confusing, and many kids will find the story predictable. Isaac's character is believable and endearing, but other characters can be one-dimensional.—Jessica Miller, New Britain Public Library, CT
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781613122136
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/1/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 1,351,770
  • File size: 4 MB

Meet the Author

William Sleator has thrilled readers for many years with his inventive books that blend real science with stories that explore our darkest fears and wishes. Critics call his writing “clever and engrossing” (Booklist) and “gleefully icky” (Publishers Weekly). He divides his time between homes in Boston and Thailand.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 15, 2012

    Review of The Phantom Limb

    As the say, “Curiosity killed the cat.” This book was a lesson of well, curiosity. Nowadays, we can’t help but be curious of things. Whether it’s people’s business or simply Christmas presents. Also, I believe this book makes a good explanation of how people who get bullied at school feel. They just hate the thought on Sundays that the next day is Monday, which means it’s school time. These kids are simply terrified. What’s worse is that some of these kids don’t have people that can help them with this situation, while others just don’t trust people to tell them about it. Also, this book helps others gain the knowledge on the pain that people with an amputated arm or leg feel.

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