Thursday, October 29, 2009

Spooky tales for tween readers

Looking for spooky stories to make your Halloween extra creepy? Here are some new books with tales to make you shiver! Look for these at your library by using the World Catalog search box here on BookBag, or buy copies using the BookBag Amazon search box.

Second Fiddle: Or, How to Tell a Blackbird from a Sausage, by Siobhan Parkinson (Roaring Book Press). Fiction. Twelve-year-old aspiring writer Mags Clarke has just moved to rural Ballybeg, Ireland, with her mother. While exploring the woods near her new home one day, Mags hears music, follows it, and finds a girl named Gillian playing the violin. Before long, Mags is obsessed with helping Gillian track down her missing father to ask for plane fare to London, where she wants to audition to attend a prestigious music school. Mags (who talks directly to readers) claims that this is not a story in which "an awful lot of dreadful things happen to the same one or two people," but the friends' quest isn't all smooth sailing. Quirky characters and humorous narration make this touching story a winner.

Fiendish Deeds, by P.J. Bracegirdle (Margaret K. McElderry Books). Horror. The town of Spooking is dark, dank, and decidedly eerie--and it suits 11-year-old Joy Wells just fine, thank you. Joy lives in Spooking but attends school in neighboring Darlington, a sticky-sweet suburb that makes her want to gag. She loves horror stories and is convinced that her favorite author, E. A. Peugeot, wrote his most shiveringly delicious tale about a bog that's located right in her hometown. When Joy learns that Darlington plans to build a water park over that very bog, she decides that it's up to her to save it--and the fiend that she believes lives there. This first volume in the Joy of Spooking series will please fans of mystery, horror, and dark humor.

Troll's Eye View: A Book of Villainous Tales, by Ellen Datlow (Viking) Fantasy. Do you think you know who the bad guys are? Maybe you just need to hear the villains' versions of the fairy tales that made them infamous. In Troll's Eye View, beloved authors such as Neil Gaiman, Holly Black, and Jane Yolen provide markedly different perspectives on the stories of Rapunzel, The Billy Goats Gruff, Jack and the Beanstalk, and more. Some of these yarns are funny, others are creepy, and some of them are just downright weird. Put them all together and you have a real treat for any fan of folklore, fantasy, or horror.

Groosham Grange, by Anthony Horowitz (Philomel Books). Horror. When David Eliot is expelled from school, his parents receive a letter inviting him to attend Groosham Grange, a boarding school with a reputation for setting misbehavers straight. Upon his arrival at Groosham Grange, David begins to wonder whether his classmates have been scared straight! New students are required to sign their names in blood, French class is cancelled during the full moon, and there seem to be lots of creepy shenanigans afoot. Fans of Lemony Snicket's humor and R.L. Stine's horror will find plenty to entertain them here...if they dare.

More Bones: Scary Stories from Around the World, by Arielle North Olson (Viking). Short Stories. Hailing from Iceland, Egypt, Spain, Japan, Hawaii, and several other spots on the globe, these 22 spooky folktales offer up a wide variety of things to scare you silly. Whether it's a magic spell gone bad, a monster, an evil witch or wizard, or just a particularly nasty human being, each story's bugaboo gives readers a different reason to sleep with the lights on. For even more scary stories from around the world, check out the first volume, Ask the Bones.

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