Avi. 2008. The seer of shadows. New York: Harper Collins.
The prolific Avi has a winner in Seer of Shadows, historical fiction with a decidedly eerie and menacing twist. Horace Carpetine, raised to believe in science and rationalism, has been apprenticed to a photographer in post-Civil War, New York City. When his unscrupulous employer decides to perpetrate a hoax on a grieving mother, a tangled tale of death, deception, abuse and the supernatural "develops," literally, on the glass plates of the photographer's camera.
Horace befriends Pegg, a black servant girl from the deceased's household, and together they confront the inconceivable. The Seer of Shadows is a gripping tale with a strong historical base and the supernatural eeriness of Gaiman's Coraline.