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by J.W. Ocker


• A warm and beautifully written—but also dark and macabre—middle grade novel about a boy whose family runs the local small-town funeral home.

• Dark middle-grade is a strong category plus a winning—and unique—concept perfect for Halloween.

• Author is an Edgar-Award winner.

• Story is both a thriller and mystery!

Sky Pony Press * September 2017 * 256 pages * Middle Grade/ages 9 -13

Douglas has grown up around the business of death. Generations of his family have run the Mortimer Family Funeral Home. The mortician and gravediggers are all his buddies. And the display room of caskets is an awesome place for hide and seek.

It’s business as usual in Douglas’s small New England town. Until one day an incredibly out of the ordinary murder victim is brought to the funeral home. And more startling: others follow. On the cusp of Halloween, a serial killer has arrived. Dissatisfied with the small-town investigation, Douglas enlists his friends to help him solve the mystery. With sumptuous descriptions of a bucolic town and it’s quirky people, fascinating yet middle grade–appropriate insider information about the funeral process, and a crackling good mystery with a heart-pounding conclusion—Death and Douglas has something for readers young and old.

J. W. Ocker is the Edgar Award–winning author of Poe-Land: The Hallowed Haunts of Edgar Allan Poe. His work has appeared in Rue Morgue magazine, the Boston Globe, CNN, the Atlantic, and other places people stick writing. He’s from Maryland but has lived in New Hampshire since 2008. This is his first book for children.