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Half-Minute Horrors Hardcover


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Half-Minute Horrors + Scary Stories Box Set: Scary Stories, More Scary Stories, and Scary Stories 3
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 720L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (August 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061833797
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061833793
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #972,615 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Book Description

How scared can you get in only 30 seconds? Dare to find out with Half-Minute Horrors, a collection of deliciously terrifying short short tales and creepy illustrations by an exceptional selection of writers and illustrators, including bestselling talents Lemony Snicket, James Patterson, Neil Gaiman, R.L.Stine, Faye Kellerman, Holly Black, Melissa Marr, Margaret Atwood, Jon Scieszka, Brett Helquist, and many more. With royalties benefiting First Book, a not-for-profit organization that brings books to children in need, this is an anthology worth devouring. So grab a flashlight, set the timer, and get ready for instant chills!

Excerpts from Half-Minute Horrors
"Something You Ought to Know" by Lemony Snicket
“The right hand doesn’t know what the left is doing” is a phrase that refers to times when people ought to know, but don’t know, about something that is happening very close to them. For instance, you ought to know about the man who watches you when you sleep.

He is a quiet man, which is why you don’t know about him.

You don’t know how he gets into your home, or how he finds his way to the room in which you sleep. You don’t know how he can stare at you so long without blinking, and you don’t know how he manages to be gone by morning, without a trace, and you don’t know where he purchased the long, sharp knife, curved like a crescent moon, that he holds in his left hand, sometimes just millimeters from your eyes, which are closed and flickering in dreams.

Continue reading "Something You Ought to Know"

"The Creeping Hand" by Margaret Atwood
The hand crept up the cellar stairs. It was shriveled and dirty, and its fingernails were long.

It scuttled along the dark hallway. At the closed door it sniffed with its fingertips, then jumped up like a giant spider, grabbed the doorknob, and turned.

Inside the room it found a sock. Then a shoe. And then--another hand, hanging down from the bed. A young hand, a hand that it could kidnap and take away down to the cellar.

But this hand was attached to an arm.

Something could be done about that.

"The Legend of Alexandra & Rose" by Jon Klassen

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"Worms" by Lane Smith

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From School Library Journal

Grade 4–8—This thrilling addition to the shiver-inducing arsenal will appeal to even the most reluctant of readers. The book contains dozens of short (most are one to three pages long) tales that range from silly (Adam Rex's one-page graphic comic) to grotesque (M. T. Anderson's "An Easy Gig") to morbid (Faye Kellerman's "Deep Six"). Unlike many short-story collections, this anthology forms a cohesive unit based on its purpose—scaring children silly. It possesses that delicious campfire quality of urban legends and lame jokes told late at night when everyone wants to be entertained. Youngsters may choose to read it straight through or to browse the stories, folktales, poems, and illustrations that make up this eclectic yet unified volume. Chock-full of selections by notable contributors such as Lane Smith, Neil Gaiman, Kenneth Oppel, Jack Gantos, James Patterson, and R. L. Stine, Half-Minute Horrors is the perfect choice for that smirking child who disdains fiction starring happy puppies or home-run heroes.—Caitlin Augusta, Stratford Library Association, CT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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With such authors as Lemony Snicket and Margaret Atwood, even as an adult you will appreciate the stories.
K. A. Dixon
With extremely limited page space, these scary scribes and scribblers work wonders, creating creepiness for kids that might even give a few adults nightmares.
John Snell Jr.
Great for Halloween or any time, HALF-MINUTE HORRORS is short enough to fill anyone's attention span and is worth the read if you like a frightening tale!
TeensReadToo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By K. A. Dixon on October 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful book of short, rather disturbing stories. I purchased this book to use during a middle school writing workshop that I run and both I and the students have thoroughly enjoyed the "half-minute horrors." I can't say enough about it! With such authors as Lemony Snicket and Margaret Atwood, even as an adult you will appreciate the stories. I would recommend this book to teachers who enjoy bringing out the quirkiness and talents in young writers and to middle school range students who will enjoy being spooked by the possibilities of things under their beds, hands looking for company, and spiders ready to take their own mother away. Absolutely LOVE this book!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By John Snell Jr. on September 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Over explaining the details of the plot is one of the biggest problems currently plaguing modern horror writing (and horror film making, for that matter). Chills thrive on ambiguity and mystery, and shining light into every corner of the story leaves no room for shadows. As any good writer of fearful fiction will tell you, no amount of description can live up to the shudder-inducing impressions a reader's imagination can piece together from a few dreadful hints. A concept too readily ignored by many writers, but happily embraced by the authors and artists at work here!

With extremely limited page space, these scary scribes and scribblers work wonders, creating creepiness for kids that might even give a few adults nightmares. Not all of the stories are gems, of course, and a few of them are actually so dark I wonder about their inclusion in a book marketed to the 9-12 group. But barring the odd bit of unevenness, this is still one of the most refreshing horror anthologies I've read across in a while. If you're a horror fan, young or old, this is one collection that's definitely worth your attention!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Audrey on October 3, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I first bought this book because of an appearance by Lemony Snicket in it, which demonstrates his usual style of being funny and creepy at the same time. The rest of the short stories (and they're extremely short) share the same sort of feel, with some funnier than others and some creepier. It also provides stories with illustrations, which will appeal to younger ones, though I warn you that some stories are pretty dark humored. I would suggest children no younger than 6 or 7 reading this book. This book is in essence a much shorter version of the Scary/Haunted Stories series that have charmed people for years. This is also a cuter version. Overall, I enjoyed the book and so did my younger sister. Great for halloween time :]
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Alyssa Marie on October 8, 2011
Format: Paperback
If you're looking for a book to read aloud to your kids (or your classroom!) during Halloween time, this is the one to pick up. It includes various genres, such as short stories, haikus, comics, limericks, etc. Also, with monsters under the bed, possessed toys, alien parents, ghosts, and a handful of other things, Half-Minute Horrors pretty much covers all the bases for creepiness.

The stories are short (I think the longest one was a little over 2 pages), yet incredibly entertaining. Yes, there are some that I didn't like very much, but for the most part, I was chuckling my way through Half-Minute Horrors. If you read it to younger kids, there is a good chance some of these stories will scare them, so if you're worried about giving your kid nightmares or something, be sure to look it over. However, I definitely recommend including this book in your Halloween celebrations.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TeensReadToo on January 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
With over thirty stories, from one paragraph to two pages, these are written to scare kids and adults alike from your favorite Young Adult authors. Holly Black, Neil Gaiman, R.L. Stine, and even James Patterson have written for this frightening anthology.

Not only are there short stories within the book, but there are also comic strips, poems, and even haikus and limericks included in the mix to creep under your skin.

Some art in the book is drawn for you to make your own interpretations. There is a collage of monsters, a Ouija board sending a boy a message of fear, even vengeful animal spirits. Each drawing is beautifully illustrated no matter the subject!

Stories vary from ghost children to evil alien parents, monsters under the bed to killer pets! Great for Halloween or any time, HALF-MINUTE HORRORS is short enough to fill anyone's attention span and is worth the read if you like a frightening tale!

Reviewed by: Lesley
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Douglas Hahner on December 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As with any anthology some stories are better than others. However the Lemony Snickett story is one of the best of the book. And it looks like you can read it for free right here on Amazon. I say read that story and if you like it give the whole book a shot.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By meemeeark on October 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love it. Most important the grandkids kids love it. Funny and clever stories. "Read (or let me read) another one!"
Highly recommend.
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