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All Hallows' Eve: 13 Stories Paperback – September 6, 2010

4.1 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 6 Up–A collection of 13 stories that will thrill and chill readers. Each tale takes place on Halloween, and some stories are variations on familiar tales. Many are set in upstate New York, which lends a nice Ichabod Crane feel to the book. Well crafted, these spine-tingling selections rely on gotcha moments and old-fashioned suspense rather than gross-out horror. While all of them are enjoyable and worth mulling over, several stand out: in the creepy Morgan Roehmar's Boys, a girl acting the part of a knifing victim during a haunted hayride comes face to face with a long-dead child murderer. Pretending describes a first date gone horribly wrong. MARIAN features a teen driver who finds himself at the mercy of his car, and the horrifying My Real Mother describes an adopted teen who searches for her blood (and, as it turns out, blood-sucking) mother, while leaving behind a gruesome mess at her adoptive parents' home. The writing is crisp and concise and truly packs a punch. Fans of horror fiction and suspense will not be disappointed.–Elaine Baran Black, Gwinnett County Public Library, Lawrenceville, GA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Creepy and gruesome, these horror stories all take place on Halloween night when high-school characters bridge the gap between the living and the dead. "He opened the door, and a body fell out, a young woman with a bloody T-shirt and a knife sticking out of her back." Bodies are sawed into pieces and packed in plastic bags while a serial killer roams free. The grisly detail is sometimes funny, whether it's the threat to suck out a teen's brains through his eye sockets, or parents dressed as vampires offering their daughter's date a drink--A, B, or O-negative. The plots also have surprising twists and turns, with the trickster often outtricked. In a great story for readers' theater, two girls talk about their friendship in parallel narratives that present very different viewpoints of their relationship--which one will murder the other? Halloween fans too old for trick-or-treating will enjoy this, especially as a read-aloud. For more chilling tales, suggest Anthony Horowitz's^B Horowitz Horror (2006). Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (September 6, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152064737
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152064730
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,693,519 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
VandeVelde can do no wrong as far as I am concerned. This collection will have teen (and older--I've got a good 35 years on the intended audience) horror enthusiasts turning pages all night.

While gore mongers won't be satisfied, those who like to be creeped out, chilled and even a little upset will be delighted.

Among the best of these terrific tales:

MORGAN ROEHMER'S BOYS--takes the haunted hayride ghost story and gives it a twist...then twists it sharply again in a nasty, vicious direction

NOW AND WHEN--What happens when five teens are allowed one question each from a backwood's psychic. Even though I could see where the story was going, I was completely sucker punched by the epilogue. It still haunts and eats at me.

BEST FRIENDS--Told in two voices. One friend tells a story through rose colored glasses, the other tells the bitter truth...and the ending is a bitter one indeed.

MY REAL MOTHER--Our heroine searches for her "real" mother when her adoptive mother is less than sympathetic to her demands. You just KNOW that the "real" mother is going to be someone our heroine won't want to know. And the ending holds a breathtaking shock for the reader.

These are the four that stand out in my mind, but all all well written, shivery and a good choice for a spooky night at home--or even for a read aloud among teens. Lots of fun.
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Format: Hardcover
I have been a fan of Vivian Vande Velde ever since I read Curses, Inc. and Other Stories. I quickly followed that up by reading several of her other books, including Now You See It . . . (Magic Carpet Books) and Companions of the Night. Ms. Vande Velde is the master of spooky stories, whether they be contemporary, paranormal, or fantasy. What she's even better at, though, is writing short stories that have a way of staying with you long after you finish reading them.

With ALL HALLOWS' EVE, the author has brought us thirteen original short stories that, as a whole, scared the bejesus out of me. Whether the story is two pages long or ten, you find yourself immersed in the life of whatever tale the author is telling--and find yourself coming out, at the end of it, glad you're reading with the lights on.

The stories in this collection include:


There is nothing timid about this collection. I have always loved Halloween; it is, in fact, my second favorite holiday, beat out only by Christmas. After reading these short stories, though, I will never look at hay rides, cemeteries, school trips, cackling old ladies, or scarecrows on front porches in the same way.
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Format: Hardcover
While I'm not one to enjoy many young adult books, and I generally like my horror a little more "down and dirty," I'm also not one to pass on creepy Halloween tales. True, these tales may not be gory, explicit, raunchy, or intense thrill rides. However, they will send a chill up your spine. While none of the stories are long enough to truly suck the reader into the plot, this collection is positively enjoyably spooky and light-hearted.

The book opens with "Come In and Rest a Spell," a tale of a witch and what she might trade in exchange for her services. "Morgan Roehmar's Boys" is one of my favorites, as well as one of the longest stories of the book (though still only about 30 pages). It's about a young girl working at a Halloween haunt, and what might happen when a local serial killer is not at rest. "Only on All Hallows' Eve" is a short but humorous tale that tells of quarrelling lovers whom death did not part. "Cemetery Field Trip" boasts that not all ghosts are bad, and not all humans are good. "Best Friends" is another humorous tale that depicts how not all perceptions are accurate. "Pretending" is another good story that portrays a bloodsucking Halloween prank with a twist.

Each tale has its own unique spin on some clichéd situations, keeping each and every story interesting. Some make you smile or chuckle, while others send shivers up and down your spine. One thing this book definitely is not, however, is boring.

Vande Velde has put together a fun collection of campfire tales of things that go bump in the night readers of any age will enjoy. Recommended for fans of all things Halloween, and for those who can appreciate what more subtle, mild, subdued and fun horror has to offer.
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Format: Hardcover
Vivian Vande Velde, All Hallows' Eve (Harcourt, 2004)

Thirteen pretty standard horror stories for Halloween. (Somehow, I entirely overlooked the fact that it was October when I put both this and The Dollhouse Murders on hold. Now I know why it took so long to get them...) Collections like this have been floating around kidlit for generations, and if you've seen one, you've seen 'em all. Or most of 'em, anyway. (I have a soft spot for a number of Robert Arthur's Alfred Hitchcock collections, in which the stories were, compared to, say, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, shockingly adult.) Still, if you're looking for stories to tell around the campfire that you can embroider with your own details, these make as good a starting point as any. I was particularly fond of the haunted barn story, whose name now escapes me, because I'm an old fogey with a mind like a sieve. And, of course, if you're a collector of horror stories, this is an absolute must for your collection. The rest of you, I'd recommend checking it out at your local library before shelling out the dough to make sure the stories are original enough to tickle your fancy. ***
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