Author I.B. Grumply needs a quiet house where he can write his next bestseller which has been twenty years in the making. He goes to Proper Properties to get help and Ms. Anita Sale sends him to 43 Old Cemetery Road. Immediately Mr. Grumply has things to grump about. The first and most important is a boy named Seymour Hope who lives on the third floor along with his cat.
Written in a series of letters between the various characters, including the lawyer, E. Gadds, the story unfolds quite tongue in cheek. Rules are established in the household. Seymour states his case that he will not be told what to eat, or have to listen to "old man" music, and he has never "read a Ghost Tamer" book in his life and won't be starting now. Grumply is told very emphatically that he may leave letters outside Seymour's door to communicate but by no means is he allowed on the third floor.
What Grumply doesn't understand is that he is actually up against a boy and his friend, a ghost named Olive, who lives in the cupola. Grumply is having a heck of a time trying to get his book. But Olive steps in. Why not write about an author who moves into an old, creaky house and confronts a ghost? And why not throw in a "change of mood" as we learn that Grumply's heart was broken by a woman named Nadia decades before and since, he has buried his feelings and been unable to put pen to paper. Grumply becomes Iggy and the relationship morphs to "Stop tickling me." Then, the co-authors begin: Chapter One: "Oh, so I'm an old ghost in a dusty old house while you get to be the famous author who admires his handsome reflection in the mirror?" Hilarious. 155 pages
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