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Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Book Review: Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz

A collection of stories based on American folklore written with the intention of giving you the creeps or making you jump with fright. The stories are accompanied by delightfully disturbing illustrations provided by Stephen Gammell.


"In the dark and the gloom, it is easy for someone listening to imagine all sorts of strange and scary things."

Anytime I post these books on instagram, people lose their shit. It seems that everyone overseas (and by overseas I mean America or Canada) can attribute all their childhood nightmares to the stories and illustrations found within these collections. A lot of people also say that these books were almost like their gateway into horror. Sadly, I did not have such an experience growing up *sad face*. Quite honestly I had never even heard of these until I saw them on instagram - and then I WANTED them. But they're quite tough to find over here! Luckily, I won a giveaway hosted by one of my BG buddies, Sadie, and now I have 3 of these in my collection.

So, this was my first encounter with Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. I tried to remind myself that these stories are written for children, I'm not necessarily the target audience. A lot of the stories were fun, and I can definitely see how those illustrations would be nightmare fuel for a younger group, but I was never actually scared or creeped out at any point. I mean, if I was, I guess I would be slightly worried... it's a children's book!! But I still enjoyed the experience! And the illustrations. And all I could think was that I can't wait to share these with my future children. This will be their gateway into all things horror. This will be their stepping stone to Stephen King (of course they won't be allowed to touch my collection, they can buy their own copies!)

One of the highlights for me was getting to read some of my fave urban legends, like the The Hook, High Beams and The Babysitter. Now THOSE stories do have the potential to freak me out, because they're things that could very much happen to any one of us! And that aspect of horror hits a little close to home for me. I also remember hearing one of the stories on Last Podcast on the Left - Me Tie Dough-ty - that story where a human head falls down the chimney each night. So it was fun to revisit that one too!

Overall, it was fun to read these and the illustrations in particular were the best part! I just wish I had at least grown up with them so that I could feel the same nostalgia towards them that nearly everyone else seems to! But never fear, the next generation in my family will... I'd give this 3 and a half stars out of 5!

Johann
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1 comment :

  1. The third book is my favorite! I read it for school in the fourth grade and reread two years ago and still really loved it. Plus, the stories are much darker.

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