Happy Halloween everyone! It’s a night of tricks, treats, ghosts, monsters, magic and mayhem! As such, I have saved a special book for today. It’s the only Tales to Give You Goosebumps book I own. It’s one made up of 10 short stories (mostly) all centered around Halloween, so it’s highly appropriate for today.
Since this is a book of short stories, things will be done a little differently today. I’m going to try to give each story a short, one paragraph review. The rest of this article will be long enough. Onward to the review!
Pumpkin Juice: My favorite story of the bunch, this story gives the book a strong start. Two friends find a recipe in an old book to make them their “best on Halloween.” Or was it beast? It all takes place while the characters trick-or-treat. Good pacing, good characters, and a good sense of danger.
Attack of the Tattoo: Another good one, showing the dangers of not checking your treats. The danger comes from a stick-on-tattoo that seems to be magic. It’s creepy and probably the second best story of the bunch. Suffers from scares being a bit one note and I don’t think snakes are very scary.
The Wish: This one felt like a Twilight Zone episode. A kid gets a magic rock that allows him to make one wish. Shows what happens when you don’t word a wish carefully. Probably the creepiest story of the bunch. I felt the most bad for this kid out of all the others.
An Old Story: Definitely the creepiest story of the bunch. In short, it seems to involve pedophilia for me. A group of old ladies try to make 12 year old boys old so they can marry them. It really weirded me out to see a story like this in a Goosebumps book. Very disturbing. Also, Halloween isn’t even mentioned in it.
The Scarecrow: The worst story in the book. No scares, really. The supernatural element turns out to be a trick. It all smells of a moral gone wrong as it sort of implies that stealing is alright.
Awesome Ants: Feels like a really cheesy sci-fi movies from the 50s. Ants originally used for a science project start growing and growing. The twist at the end is kind of funny. Though, it boggles my mind how the kid didn’t notice his town overrun by ants while going to school.
Please Don’t Feed the Bears: Probably the silliest of all the stories. A family goes to Cuddle Bear Land for Halloween and finds out something sinister may be afoot. The ending felt rushed and the twist felt karmic. All in all, solid.
The Goblin’s Glare: Kid makes a Halloween decoration that looks really scary then keeps having nightmares about it. Became dull after two non-scares. Ending was unpredictable, but the constant “it was all a dream”-ness of it made it boring. Cool idea, bad execution.
Bats About Bats: Two girls befriend a new girl who likes bats while they hate bats. The girls seem a bit mean-spirited about their new friend’s interest. Interesting story with a predictable twist. If you have a fear of bats, this story may gross you out. Main character felt paper thin. Twist was set up alright.
The Space Suit Snatcher: A kid obsessed with sending messages into space one night gets an answer. The third best story with a good double twist. It was also funny.
This collection is actually not that bad. The stories are varied and creative with hardly any real stinkers among the bunch. It was a good group of Halloween treats. Speaking of, you all stay safe out there and have the happiest of Halloweens!