The Ghost on Saturday Night

( 1 )


A madcap tale of fog and phantoms

Opie and Aunt Etta think there's something funny going on when Professor Pepper announces that he's going to raise the ghost of a dead outlaw—live on stage. Can Opie cut through all t he fog to get to the bottom of the professor's plans?

See the Ghost of Crookneck John! That's what Professor Pepper's sign promises, and Opie can hardly wait to see such a sight. But the unseen specter escapes from his coffin ...

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A madcap tale of fog and phantoms

Opie and Aunt Etta think there's something funny going on when Professor Pepper announces that he's going to raise the ghost of a dead outlaw—live on stage. Can Opie cut through all t he fog to get to the bottom of the professor's plans?

See the Ghost of Crookneck John! That's what Professor Pepper's sign promises, and Opie can hardly wait to see such a sight. But the unseen specter escapes from his coffin during the show, and if that weren't bad enough, the town bank is robbed too! Is Crookneck John a bandit from beyond the grave—or is more than the fog being pulled over the townsfolk's' eyes? A reissue of one of Sid Fleischman's early novels.

When Professor Pepper gives Opie tickets to a ghost-raising instead of a nickel in payment for being guided through the dense fog, Opie manages to make money anyway by helping to thwart a bank robbery.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Melinda Medley Sprinkle
Opie is a ten-year-old boy who lives with his Aunt Etta in California. Aunt Etta has promised to buy Opie a horse only when he has earned enough money for a saddle. Opie's most successful income is the fog business. He knows Golden Hill like the back of his hand, and, when the thick fog comes in, he runs errands and guides people through town. After guiding Professor Pepper through town, he is given a ticket to see Crookneck John rise from the dead. Signs are posted all over town announcing that the ghost is coming. Opie can't wait for the show to begin. Suspicions rise when the murderous ghost is ordered to come forth and mysteriously disappears into the foggy aerie night. This humorous tale by the Newbery medal-winning author of The Whipping Boy will keep the reader excited about the chapters that follow and on the edge of their seats until the ghostly case of Crookneck John is laid to rest. 1997 (orig.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688149208
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/28/1997
  • Series: Beech Tree Chapter Bks.
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 64
  • Sales rank: 792,411
  • Age range: 10 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 420L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 7.62 (h) x 0.12 (d)

Meet the Author

Sid Fleischman wrote more than sixty books for children, adults, and magicians. Among his many awards was the Newbery Medal for his novel The Whipping Boy. The author described his wasted youth as a magician and newspaperman in his autobiography The Abracadabra Kid. His other titles include The Entertainer and the Dybbuk, a novel, and three biographies, Sir Charlie: Chaplin, The Funniest Man in the World; The Trouble Begins at 8: A Life of Mark Twain in the Wild, Wild West; and Escape! The Story of The Great Houdini.

Laura Cornell lives in New York City with her daughter, Lily (first and only), but they spend much time in California, Laura's first state in her first home. She was asked to illustrate Jamie's first book, and that became ten. Lucky is the first word that comes to mind.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

There's nothing bashful about a tule fog. It'll creep inside your clothes. It'll seep through the window cracks and get right into bed with you.

When I got home from the schoolhouse on Tuesday, there wasn't a wisp of fog. I lived with my great-aunt Etta and she was waiting for me.

"Opie," she said. "How would you like chicken for supper?"

"Yes, ma'am"' I said.

"Splendid. I've got the chicken. You go out back and pluck it."

I gave a groan. She gave me the chicken. She had a way of foxing me into doing pesky chores like that.

I sat myself on the chopping stump and began to pull feathers. I passed the time thinking up names for my horse. I already had a list a mile-and-a-half long.

I didn't own a horse-yet.

But I had one promised. Aunt Etta had struck a bargain with me. When I earned enough money to buy a good saddle, she'd buy a good horse to fit under it.

The trouble was I was only ten and kind of runty in size. The older, bigger boys seemed to get all the after-school jobs around town.

"Wild Charlie," I said aloud. I liked the sound of that. A horse ought to have the exact right name. I mean, you wouldn't name a fine horse Hubert. He'd die of shame. I could see myself galloping across the meadow on Wild Charlie. But when I looked up I couldn't see the meadow. Or the trees. Or the barn. And before long I couldn't even see the chicken in my hands.

A tule fog had sprung up.

My heart gave a mighty leap. There was saddle money to be made in a good thick fog! I had already saved $2.11. But I needed heaps and heaps of money--$17.59 exactly.

I began plucking the rest ofthose feathers so fast you'd think that hen was in a rooster fight. The fog around me was dripping wet. All you needed to wash your ears was a bar of soap. Not that I had a mind to.

I guess there's nothing thicker and wetter than a ground-hugging California tule fog. Aunt Etta was always saying not to stand in one too long. You'd grow webbed feet.

I felt my way back to the house and handed the bird to Aunt Etta.

"I'll be back for supper," I said.

"Don't you got lost," she said. "That tule is so thick you'll need a compass to cross the road."

"Yes, ma'am."

"And don't stay out too long. You'll grow webbed feet."

The Ghost on Saturday Night. Copyright © by Sid Fleischman. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2004

    One of the BEST books EVER written!!!!

    THe first time i read this book was in 2nd grade. SInce then I've read it 14 times! When Opie is Delivering some oil to the barber he meets a strange man which he takes back to the man's hotel through the thick fog. The Man then gives Opie a ticket to a ghost raising on Saturday. Opie goes... you'll have to find out what happens from their for your self.

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