Publisher's Note:  

Elise and Franklin have always been best friends. Elise has always lived in the big house with her loving Uncle and Aunt, because Elise's parents died when she was too young to remember them.  There's always been a barn behind the house with eight locked doors on the second floor.

When Elise and Franklin start middle school, things feel all wrong. Bullying. Not fitting in. Franklin suddenly seems babyish.  Then, soon after her 12th birthday, Elise receives a mysterious key left for her by her father. A key that unlocks one of the eight doors upstairs in the bar . . .

Eight Keys

by Suzanne LaFleur

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Overall Review:  

I have had this book on my to-read list for years. It struck me as a book I would be interested in, simply because the title is Eight Keys. Once I discovered that the book did, indeed have a storyline that involves keys I was sure I needed to read it. I only now got around to reading it, but it was worth the wait. I think even though the main characters in this book are children, they have a lot to teach adults. The way they deal with issues that arise in their lives is mature at times, and immature at others. But beneath it all is the truth that our actions do make a difference to what happens around us.


I enjoyed the theme this book carried of growing up and leaving childish things behind. The two main characters in this book, Elise and Franklin, are obviously at a cross-roads in their childhood. One where they must decide if they will hang on to the games and make-believe they adore, or give it up to be accepted by their peers. I think Eight Keys has a good lesson to teach us:  we can either make choices for ourselves or let others dictate what we do...with the risk that either way, the outcome may be one we didn't foresee.

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language:  1 religious exclamation; 3 derogatory names; 3 scatological words.


Violence/Gore:  A character is in a small accident and breaks her thumb; a character is mentioned to have been killed in a war; parents are mentioned to be dead from childbirth and cancer.


Sex/Nudity:  A woman is mentioned to have had a child out of wedlock.

Mature Subject Matter:  

Death, bullying.

Alcohol / Drug Use:  

Minors smoke.

Reviewed By Lydia
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