Showing posts with label point horror. Show all posts
Showing posts with label point horror. Show all posts
October 26, 2011

13 Days of Halloween - Halloween Night Review

It’s late at night and I’m attempting to get this new Halloween post written as I have almost completely forgotten about it. Today’s post will be a short review on the 1993 Point Horror Classic by R.L. Stine, one of the most best-selling writers of children books. I first read the book back in middle school, but somehow, somewhere, I have misplaced the book. Over the years, thanks to thrift stores, I have obtained not only one copy, but two. The cover features a creepy jack-o-lantern, which is completely different than the cover I found online to use with this post, with a butcher knife sticking out of it, reminding me of the beginning credits of the horror movie, Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Meyers. 

With Halloween several days away, teenager Brenda Morgan is planning a Halloween party with her friends, Traci and Dina, but they are also planning on something much deadlier - murdering Brenda’s cousin, Halley! Her cousin moved in with Brenda's family because her parents are going through a nasty divorce, but she keeps interfering in Brenda’s life, stealing away Brenda's boyfriend, Ted, and she keeps borrowing the car without asking first. Of course, the girls aren’t really planning a murdering Halley. Their just using her name for a character in a murder mystery short story for class, at least that is what they originally planned.

Strange things begin to happen to Brenda as Halloween nears, blood is smeared on her bedroom wall, a headless bird is left in a pumpkin, and chunks of rotten meat are left in her bed. Is Halley responsible for all this?

Halloween Night is a sweet, quick read. The plot is well written and the bitterness Brenda has for Halley is believable, reminding me of how I felt about a few relatives at the age. There are several twist and turns throughout the book, including a stabbing at the party. It’s a great read to get you into the Halloween mood.
October 20, 2011

13 Days of Halloween: Halloween Party Review




Fear Street: Halloween Party
BY: R.L. Stine
PUBLISHED BY: Simon Pulse
PUBLISHED IN: 1990
ISBN: 978-1-4169-1811-0
Pages: 154
Reviewed by Billy Burgess

Does anyone recall the bookshelves of the school book fair being filled with teen horror books? I got caught up in the horror madness in the early 90s, about the time I started watching the 1978’s Halloween at the age of nine, and I stumbled upon the bizarre world of R.L. Stine, a few years before the Goosebumps phenomenon hit the shelves. I read and collected dozens of R.L. Stine novels back in the day, but as I grew up I lost interest. Luckily I kept all of the books and I started collecting R.L. Stine, along with other Point Horror books, again.

Last Christmas, I received Halloween Party by R.L Stine, which is part of the Fear Street series, which I have always wondered why none of the books have every been made into a cheap horror movie or a low-rated CW series. I’ve never read the book before and was memorized by the snappy new cover design from the Simon Pulse release. There’s something about a jack-o-lantern that gives me the creeps. I tossed the book on the coffee table and had forgotten about it until last month when I was planning the 13 Days of Halloween posts. I thought it would be a perfect time to read it.

The Halloween Party is about a teen, Terry Ryan, who, along with his girlfriend, Niki Meyer (Michael Meyers? A Coincidence? Why is there always someone with the last name Meyer or Meyers in a horror novel?) has been invited, along with a selected number of guests, to the Halloween Party of Justine, a new student to Shadyside High with a mysterious past. The party is being held at the old Cameron Mansion on Fear Street, beyond the cemetery. The mansion is said to be haunted!

This is not your typical party as all Justine wants to do is play wicked, cruel games to embarrass her fellow students. Then, out of nowhere, several bikers crash the party, reminding me of the party scene from the movie Weird Science. While the new unwelcome guests causes a little chaos, Niki disappears and one of the partiers is found dead! Terry searches through the spooky mansion in search of his missing girlfriend, while Justine unleashes her revenge plot.

 I have to admit that I normally zoom right through Fear Street novels, but I had trouble getting into this one until I was about the middle of the book. I rolled my eyes as the bikers invaded the party, and my stomach quenched at every cruel joke Justine unleashed. Only when Terry learns of the mansion’s previous owners’ deaths does the plot actually get interesting, and you finally understand why Justine only invited specific guests. Despite that fact that Halloween Party is not the best of the Fear Street, I still enjoyed the few twists and turns that made it a decent read. I can easily see this being made into a TV movie, but I guess those are too rare these days thanks to the boring scripted reality shows. Let me give you some advice: If you get invited to a party at an old mansion next to a cemetery - Don’t Go!

April 1, 2011

Book Review - April Fools

April Fools
BY: Riche Tankersley Cusick
PUBLISHED BY: Scholastic
PUBLISHED IN: 1990
ISBN: 0-590-43115-3
Pages: 218
Reviewed by Billy Burgess

Belinda, Frank and Hildy went joyriding on the night of April 1st. Frank flickered the headlights on and off for fun, or so they thought. They caused a terrible car accident that night. The other car blew up, so there was no hope of survival. Belinda and her friends left the scene of the crime. Two weeks go by, and Belinda no has a guilty conscience. Her friends tell her to just forget about it and get on with your life.

She is hired by Mrs. Thorne to tutor her stepson, eighteen-year-old Adam, who is recovering from a terrible illness or was it an accident. He doesn’t want anyone to see his face because of the burns. Adam is still grieving the fact that his father is in the hospital and is not suppose to survive much longer.

Belinda has trouble tutoring Adam, as he doesn’t want any help. Then, to make matters worse, strange things start happening. She receives a bloody doll’s head and a car nearly runs her over. Are these just pranks? Or did someone see Belinda and her friends on April Fools night?

Riche Tankersley Cusick wrote several of the books from the Point Horror era and a few Buffy the Vampire Slayer tie-ins. I had my doubts about the book after I finished reading the Prologue. The plot of Belinda and her friends driving carelessly and leaving the scene of the accident is somewhat of a cliché in the YA thriller/horror books. As the story progresses, April Fools became a different story, concentrating on Belinda’s tutoring jog and the strange events that surround her. Most of the book takes place two weeks after April 1st, which is kind of misleading. The story would have been more convincing if there was a year difference between the prologue and the rest of the story, instead of two weeks. I still found the book enjoyable and fast to read. You’ll quickly turn the pages to find out who is behind the pranks. This is a great book to read around April Fools Day.
March 25, 2011

Book Review - Spring Break




Spring Break
Spring Break
BY: Barbara Steiner
PUBLISHED BY: Scholastic
PUBLISHED IN: 1996
ISBN: 0-590-54419-5
Pages: 202
Reviewed by Billy Burgess

Angie Hendrix and her friends, Paula, Kerry, and Chad, and her brother, Justin, are spending their spring break at a rented three-story house on the beach after they find that every motel is filled with spring breakers. Angie starts hearing strange footsteps and a mysterious voice. The voice sounds like a little girl crying out for help. Nobody believes her, and they think her imagination is running wild because they are staying in the old house.

Angie soon meets a young man named Val. They are both instantly attracted to each other. Val is very odd, and always has an excuse not to hang out with them, or go into the house. Chad’s dog, Brandy, disappears. Then, one by one, Paula, Kerry, and Chad disappear, too. And did I forget to mention that Angie starts hearing noises coming from the locked attic.

Spring Break is part of the ‘Point Horror’ era, and sadly I must have missed this book as it was published in 1996 when I was reading Stephen King and John Saul novels. I found Spring Break at a thrift store a few years ago. It got placed in a closet and I forgot about even having it until I was searching for another book and stumbled upon it. Since this is late March, I thought it would be a great time to read it and write a review. The book is short and is a fast read. The book has aged some, for instance, there are no cell phones, mp3 players, or iPods. Today it is hard for an author to write a young adult thriller without the reader wondering why the characters don’t call or text for help.

I enjoyed reading about the group of teens and the strange occurrences at the beach house. If you can get a hold of a copy, I recommend reading it late at night.

December 23, 2010

Book Review - The Snowman

The Snowman (Point Horror Series)The Snowman
BY: R.L. Stine
PUBLISHED BY: Scholastic
PUBLISHED IN: 1991
ISBN: 0-590-43280 -X
Pages: 181
Ages: Young Adult
Reviewed by Billy Burgess

Since her parent’s death, Heather has been living with overprotected Uncle James. She hates the man. She thinks he is only after her inheritance, which she will receive when she turns eighteen. Until then she is spending her time working at a diner and dating her kind-of- boyfriend, Ben. Everything changes when she meets the tall ice-blond, Snowman.

Heather instantly falls for Snowman’s charms. She soon gives him money to help with his family, but she does not know he does not have a family. He does not even go to her school. Then, her uncle goes missing. Could Snowman be involved? Is Snowman a cold-blooded killer?

The book cover is a little misleading. This book is not about an actually snowman, but a mysterious boy whose nickname is Snowman. There is not much of a plot to go by, but there are some twists and turns that make this book worth reading. I would like to add that this book is written for Young Adults and not for children.

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AMAZING!!! Go get this book right now!!

Great! Highly Recommend

It's ok. Borrow from a friend material.

Not that good but at least read the blurb.

Leave it on the shelf!

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