Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

The Great Ghost Rescue

The Great Ghost Rescue

4.5 7
by Eva Ibbotson, Kevin Hawkes (Illustrator)

See All Formats & Editions

The ghosts of Britain need a sanctuary. Castles with central heating, bogs drained for motorways, dismal forests cleared for car parks -- there are few places left for a respectable ghost to haunt. Humphrey the Horrible is a small, mostly unsuccessful ghost in a family of ghastly ghouls. His mother worries. But Humphrey has enough pluck to befriend a smart,


The ghosts of Britain need a sanctuary. Castles with central heating, bogs drained for motorways, dismal forests cleared for car parks -- there are few places left for a respectable ghost to haunt. Humphrey the Horrible is a small, mostly unsuccessful ghost in a family of ghastly ghouls. His mother worries. But Humphrey has enough pluck to befriend a smart, politically aware schoolboy, Rick Henderson, who is willing to take the ghosts' cause right to the top, to number 10 Downing Street -- home of the Prime Minister.

Editorial Reviews

Eva Ibbotson unleashes a host of displaced ghosts in this spookily spirited book that'll keep you laughing! When construction workers begin remodeling dismal Craggyford Castle to build a holiday camp, the family of ghosts residing there -- including a father named the Gilding Kilt, a Hag for a mother, screaming George, Wailing Winifred, and gentle Humphrey the Horrible -- decide they must find new digs. Stumbling into a school dormitory, they meet Rick, a student who learns the only real help for them is Britain's prime minister himself. After a number of other ghosts join their cause, along with a couple of hauntings to make a few nonbelievers in ghosts shiver in their shoes, Rick and the ghost family finally wind up at 10 Downing Street, where they are awarded a marvelously "hulking black ruin" named Insleyfarne Castle. But have the ghosts really found their dream home, or is it a political plot to get rid of them? Loaded with lighthearted adventure that's ghastly exciting, The Great Ghost Rescue is another imaginative treat from the author of Which Witch? and The Secret of Platform 13.
Publishers Weekly
"Fans of Dial-A-Ghost will eagerly welcome this new flock of floating phantoms," according to PW. "The ghost's housing shortage continues, and human hero Rick wants the British government to do something about it." Ages 8-up. (May) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Eva Ibbotson does fantasy with a lovely, droll touch. It's a welcome British talent, and fans of her The Secret of Platform 13 will be delighted by the import of this earlier work. It's a tall(but ecologically significant(tale of the woes of Humphrey the Horrible and his extended ghost family as they lose their ancestral haunting castle to suburban sprawl. In search of a new home, they descend en masse on a dormitory of the Norton Castle School. Enter Rick, a very alive young man with compassion and a social conscience. He takes on the ghosts' cause with enthusiasm, and is soon visiting the Prime Minister in London to beg for a sanctuary for Britain's ghosts and ghouls and vampire bats. That's just the beginning of the adventure. Mad businessmen and exorcists and a lonely and perfect Scottish castle are soon added to the mix. Ibbotson has the most fun with her descriptions, though. Ecotoplasms never seemed so real; hags never smelled more exotic(and who'd have thought one could fall in love with a baby vampire bat named Rose? It's a good read all around. 2002 (orig. 1975), Dutton,
— Kathleen Karr
School Library Journal
Gr 3-7-Cast out when their spooky castle gets modernized into a holiday camp, Humphrey and his ghost family search for a new home. They meet a friendly schoolboy named Rick who decides they should start a "ghost sanctuary," since human expansion has ruined so many ghoulish spots in England. When the sanctuary turns out to be a trap meant to exorcise all of the ghosts, Rick and Humphrey must save the day. Ibbotson's sense of humor is in fine form, especially in her detailed descriptions of the various ghostly characters. Headless Aunt Hortensia and Humphrey's brother, George the Screaming Skull, are just two of the repulsive, yet endearing figures. There's a bizarre warmth of feeling between humans and ghosts, as when Rick agrees to let a sickly young vampire bat suck a bit of his blood in a gross, but weirdly tender scene. The humans are mostly exaggerated caricatures, which works fine for most of them, including the evil exorcist, who neatly ends up as a ghost in need of sanctuary himself. However, Rick and his human friends who help are less engaging than other Ibbotson protagonists. Plot contrivances that keep the story moving, including a convenient local witch coven and a surprisingly understanding Prime Minister, fit with the lighthearted tone, but also prevent the story from becoming truly involving. The book still has considerable appeal, though, because of the deliciously consistent macabre humor and the entertaining ensemble of ghosts.-Steven Engelfried, Beaverton City Library, OR Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
5.78(w) x 8.56(h) x 0.76(d)
920L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Eva Ibbotson, born Maria Charlotte Michelle Wiesner (21 January 1925 - 20 October 2010), was an Austrian-born British novelist, known for her children's books. Some of her novels for adults have been successfully reissued for the young adult market in recent years. For the historical novel Journey to the River Sea (Macmillan, 2001), she won the Smarties Prize in category 9-11 years, garnered unusual commendation as runner up for the Guardian Prize, and made the Carnegie, Whitbread, and Blue Peter shortlists. She was a finalist for the 2010 Guardian Prize at the time of her death. Her last book, The Abominables, was one of eight books on the longlist for the same award in 2012.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

The Great Ghost Rescue 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the best book I've ever read! I would give it 100 stars (but it only shows 5 so im giving it 5)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked this book a lot. It was very funny in some parts. Even though the pictures were cool, the author included words that put pictures in my head that were amazing! This book was very exciting! At the end of every chapter there was a cliffhanger, and I could barely tear myself away from the book. If you like a good adventure story you would love this book! I would give this book 4 stars because even though I would have changed a few parts, it was a really good book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Great Ghost Rescue I liked this book The Great Ghost Rescue. I would give the book about 4 stars because there were a few really weird parts. Like a part when Rick was dragging the unconscious Lord Bullhaven to the car. Lord Bullhaven is a really weird, creepy, and mean guy. If he sees a flower growing up from his yard, he will pull it out right away. But one of my favorite parts was at the end when everyone was happy again. Right before that something strange was happening to all the ghosts. So everyone was happy and Lord Bullhaven died. So now he is a ghost, but when he is a ghost he is nice to everyone and said sorry for everything he did. I think you should read this book. Its funny.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought The Great Ghost Rescue was a GREAT book! I like it so much I¿m going to give it 5 stars! I really like it because there¿s a lot of excitement in it. If you like ghosts you should check out this book and even if you don¿t like ghosts you should still consider reading this book. The ghosts make it really exciting and I just want to keep reading and reading and reading and reading! It¿s just a little spooky, but I think it¿s fine. Here¿s a preview for it: There¿s this ghost family and their home is being changed so they have to move. They met a boy named Rick who helps them find a home. But then something very, very, very bad happens. To find out what happens you¿ll have to get this book. If you like stories by Eva Ibbotson then you¿ll really like this book, but if you don¿t like Eva Ibbotson you should still try it. Remember, the book is The Great Ghost Rescue by Eva Ibbotson.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought the book The Great Ghost Rescue was a really good book. The reason that I like this book is because there¿s not a lot of characters to remember and its balance of emotion the book can be funny, scary, sad, and just plain gross. If you like books by Eva Ibbotson and J. K. Rowling this book is for you. For my review I would give this book 5 out of 5.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book was funny and spooky at the same time but I really loved it right now i am reading which witch it is an awsome book so far.