Review Detail

Kids Fiction 1602
For Fans of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Scary short stories seem to be perennially popular, and not just around Halloween! This newest collection edited by R.L. Stine (like Fear and Nightmare Hour) includes some newer, popular authors such as Bruce Hale, Chris Grabenstein, and Beth Fantaskey. The stories are thematically linked by all starting with a SCREAM!

Because each story is by a different author, they vary widely, but are all scary enough to send a chill down the readers' spines but not keep them awake at night! There are monsters, ghosts, and the usual spooky characters as well as some more technologically based frights.

Since one story is never enough, it's great that this is a fairly long book with 20 stories. There are brief descriptions of the mystery writers at the back of the book, which is a great resource for readers who want to hunt down further chilling tales by whomever wrote the story that scared them the most!
Good Points
Scary stories for middle school tend toward goofiness a bit too much, but Stine (once we move beyond Goosebumps) takes middle grade horror very seriously, and the stories he has picked evidence that. From school trips to historical sites to traditional creepy basements, all of these stories take ordinary occurrences and make them deeply creepy.

Personally, I think there is an entire novel to be written involving a creepy ice cream truck!
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