Wednesday 17 June 2020

The Egyptian Mirror

Finished June 15
The Egyptian Mirror by Michael Bedard

This spooky story for 9-12 year-olds takes place in Caledon. Simon and his family have recently moved back into the house his mother grew up in, after the death of his grandfather. Simon is the new kid, and smaller than most of the other boys in his neighbourhood. Watching them play baseball, he sees a ball break the window of an elderly neighbour across the street. When he later sees the neighbour fall while attempting a repair, he lets his mom know. The neighbour, Mr. Hawkins was a good friend of Simon's grandfather.
Once Mr. Hawkins is home from the hospital, Simon begins delivering dinners to him, and discovers from a photograph that Mr. Hawkins shares with him that he looks just like his grandfather who was such a good friend of Mr. Hawkins. The two start their own friendship, talking while Mr. Hawkins eats his dinner. Simon retrieves things from the second floor rooms for the older man, and learns about his career in archaeology and his large collection of mirrors, displayed throughout the house.
Simon finds himself particularly drawn to one small mirror, an Egyptian one that Mr. Hawkins believes is a well-done replica. Simon sees things in the mirror and learns that Eleanor, Mr. Hawkins wife, used to see things as well. He learns the story of how the mirror was acquired and the odd circumstances surrounding it.
Simon also begins to get ill, losing energy and feeling dizzy, and the doctors have a hard time diagnosing what is wrong with him.
Simon has been helping at home with his younger toddler sister Babs whenever he can. He reads to her, spends time taking her on outings and just playing with her. On one of their outings, he meets another new kid in the neighbourhood that he recognizes from school, Abbey. She is with her younger brother Max, and the four children start spending some time together. Abbey and Simon begin a friendship and Simon begins sharing some of his feelings and observations with her, including those around the mirror.
There is a strong feeling of danger and darkness present in this story, and the children must reach out to another archaeologist for assistance in resolving the threats on Simon and others.
An interesting, magical tale for young readers of fantasy and history.

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