Book Reviews

Review: What Stays Buried by Suzanne Young

I will always read middle grade ghost-y stories and so this one about family got to me! Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts of What Stays Buried.


Twelve-year-old Calista Wynn will lose her ability to speak with the dead on her thirteenth birthday.

And with only a few weeks left, children have started going missing.

When Calista meets The Tall Lady–an angry spirit with a grudge against Calista, her family, and the entire town–she knows she’s found the ghost responsible for the disappearances.

It’s up to Calista, the only one who can see The Tall Lady, to stop her. If she doesn’t, Calista won’t just lose her powers… she’ll lose everyone she has left.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

This urban fantasy middle grade is perfect for fans of curses, mediums, and family secrets. What Stays Buried has one of those perfect titles. Not only does Calista’s family have secrets of their own, their town is also sitting on a chest of buried skeletons. From the premise alone, I love the idea of a girl who is facing the loss of her father – twice fold. She’s always been able to see the ghosts of her grandmother and father, but as she approaches her birthday, she will lose that ability.

Not going to lie, I teared up as this element developed. For Calista, it’s a second loss after their initial death. Above all, What Stays Buried is a story about revenge and justice. It’s about the pain of knowledge. Because while we may think we want the answers, what if they only bring us more pain? Questions we can never answer? This charming middle grade balances danger, family dynamics that are precious, and sacrifice.

(Disclaimer: Some of the links below are affiliate links. For more information you can look at the Policy page. If you’re uncomfortable with that, know you can look up the book on any of the sites below to avoid the link)

What Stays Buried solidifies the knowledge that we can’t hold back our love. We have to know when it’s time to let it go. Find What Stays Buried on Goodreads, Storygraph, Amazon, Indiebound,, & The Book Depository.


What is your favorite middle grade debut?

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