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Paperback choice;Childrens books

UNCLE VAMPIRE. SHADOW MAN. By Cynthia D Grant. Mammoth. pound;4.99 each.

This author of well-written page-turners deserves to be better known. Uncle Vampire uses the ancient myth as a powerful metaphor. Carolyn's uncle Toddy (yes, Tod means death in German) is abusing her, but she expresses her fears in supernatural terms.

In Shadow Man, a brilliant use of multiple viewpoints explores the effect of a death. Gabriel, a golden boy from a dysfunctional family, is resurrected in the words of his girlfriend, family and friends.

We learn about him in short chapters that form a dazzling picture of a small community and the way it deals with grief. Unmissable books for anyone of 12 or over.

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