MIDDLE GRADE BOOK REVIEW: Hollywood, Dead Ahead by Kate Klise

43 Old Cemetery Road, #5
by Kate Klise, illustrated by M. Sarah Klise
Harcourt, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-547-85283-6
Middle Grade Humor
Grades 2-5
Reviewed from purchased copy.


In this fifth volume from 43 Old Cemetery Road, the trio at Spence Mansion leaves Ghastly for Hollywood, California . . . and for a shot at stardom! The film producer Moe Block Busters wants to make the 43 Old Cemetery Road story into a movie—and he promises it will be a sure-fire hit! Lured by the lights of Tinseltown, Ignatius B. Grumply, Olive C. Spence, and Seymour Hope pack their suitcases. But when they arrive in Hollywood, Olive has a sure-fire fit when she discovers how quickly fame changes Iggy and Seymour. Even worse, Olive has been written out of the script! “Little old lady ghosts are so yesterday,” says Moe. “What America wants is a terrifying ghost named Evilo.” Well, if it’s Evilo they want, it’s Evilo they’ll get. And Olive knows just the femme fatale to help her scare Hollywood’s most despicable director half to death.


I love this series!  I love the humor and wordplay (lots of punning, the names alone say it all:  Moe Block Busters, Hugh Briss, Ivana Oscar, etc) I know this series won't be everyone's cup of tea, but I thoroughly enjoy these stories told entirely through letters, memos, newspaper articles, photos, ads, and anything else the author and illustrator can think up.  There isn't a whole lot of depth here, these are mostly stories that are light and easy to read, yet each book does have a theme.  This one focuses on how easily fame can corrupt and how things are often not how they seem to be.  Olive, the ghost, is especially enjoyable to read about as she has to bring Iggy and Seymour back to their senses and save Ivana Oscar from an evil plot as well as fix the mess that Mo Block Busters has made of her and her collaborators story. Can it be done? Of course it can be done, if Seymour, Iggy, and Olive have anything to say about it. Full of heart and humor, I highly recommend this series.

Be sure to check out the rest of the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

Kid Lit Blog Hop


  1. This sounds HILARIOUS! I love puns in children's books. I will definitely check this one out!

  2. Sounds like great fun, thanks for linking it in to the Kid Lit Blog Hop. cheers Julie Grasso

  3. Sounds like a ton of fun! Thanks for the review and hosting the Kid Lit Blog Hop!
    Hopping along the Kid Lit Blog Hop,
    Cool Mom for Stanley & Katrina

  4. Those names are hilarious :) I'm building up quite the TBR list for when Max hits age 10 lol. Thanks so much for continuing to hostess. Happy hopping!

  5. Thanks for introducing us to this series - it sounds hilarious. The names alone! lol Thanks for linking this post into the Kid Lit Blog Hop and thanks for hosting once again. :)


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