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Prom Nights from Hell Hardcover – Bargain Price, April 24, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up—This exciting collection of short stories by popular teen authors—Meg Cabot, Kim Harrison, Michele Jaffe, Stephenie Meyer, and Lauren Myracle—embraces the dark side of a revered tradition. It starts with vampire-hunting Mary, who takes her mission of revenge on Dracula seriously enough to evoke his wrath by killing his son at her high school prom, and ends with the horned demon Sheba, who tries to wreak havoc at her prom. With edgy writing designed to hook and captivate even the most reluctant of readers, each story is filled with strong, appealing characters who work their magic on the senses by appearing to be strong, daring, and passionate. Readers are taken on an exhilarating ride through the terrifying side of an otherwise common event, and the mood is cleverly sustained with an aura of fast-paced yet somber writing. One distinct highlight of the collection is the well-orchestrated balance between the different aspects of horror that each writer addresses. Sure to have appeal for older teens, this book will undoubtedly make the circuit of fans of demons, ghosts, vampires, and gothic love stories.—Caryl Soriano, New York Public Library
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Far from gauzy, rose-colored clichés, the prom nights depicted in this anthology are surreal, scary, and often populated with monsters and zombies. A well-known author for young adults contributes each of the five long stories. In Meg Cabot's, "The Exterminator's Daughter," a high-school student chases down a vampire before he can claim his next victim on prom night. In Stephenie Meyer's "Hell on Earth," a prom is nearly destroyed by warring biblical demons; then dreamy half-angel Gabe comes to the rescue. The tone in each story wavers between glib camp and chilling terror, just like a teen horror movie. Several stories include some sexy innuendo; in Michelle Jaffe's "Kiss and Tell," the narrator reads about "Tantric tongue tricks" and imagines a handsome older man "without his shirt but with a pitcher of maple syrup and a big . . . stack of pancakes." Like many anthologies, this one is uneven, but there is plenty here to amuse older horror fans, particularly those with a cynical view of prom night. Ed: add price to imprint. Engberg, Gillian
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

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen (April 24, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061253103
  • ASIN: B006QS2X64
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1.1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #944,647 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

The abrupt ending is very disappointing.
I purchased this book because it is one of the few that have a Stephenie Meyer story. (has she quit writing?).
Amazon Customer
I diffidently liked Meg Cabot and will read more from her.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By TeensReadToo on May 31, 2007
Format: Paperback
What do you get when five great authors come together to create a paranormal prom anthology? In a word - greatness!

Meg Cabot starts off the collection with THE EXTERMINATOR'S DAUGHTER. When Mary shows up at Swig, an exclusive VIP club in Manhattan, it's not to socialize. No, she's on a mission to take out Sebastian Drake -- and by take out, I mean kill him with a crossbow. But when Adam, a fellow student at Saint Eligius, takes his own potshots at the dreaded Sebastian, things get a lot more interesting.

Lauren Myracle, the author of THE CORSAGE, has written what is probably the saddest, and creepiest, story of the bunch. All Frankie wants is for her best guy friend, Will, to realize that it's his destiny to ask her to the prom. To accomplish that goal, she drags Will and her other best friend, Yun Sun, to visit Madame Zanzibar, a fortune-teller. She's sure that Madame Z will proclaim that Will is her one true love, and that will be that. But the psychic is short on information, but does end up grudgingly handing over to Frankie a dried up old corsage, which she says will grant her three wishes. Over the next couple of days, however, Frankie will come to realize that she'll have to make some requests that she never in her wildest dreams would have thought of making.

MADISON AVERY AND THE DIM REAPER by Kim Harrison is the longest story in the group, and the most involved. When Madison ends up at the costume prom with a dud date, she's surprised to find one guy who can pick up the slack. Seth isn't like anyone she's ever met before. Unfortunately, before too long she'll find out why that is, and the picture it paints isn't pretty. There are deaths, white reapers, black reapers, grim reapers, and odd amulets.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Heather on January 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a collection of five paranormal stories that all deal with, well, the prom. While all are unique and enjoyable in their own way, the anthology does not live up to my expectations. A fun read, but definitely not the best paranormal anthology out there. A portion of the proceeds goes to First Book, so if YA paranormal stories are your thing, it is worth checking out. Pickier readers, however, should stick to a library copy, because many of the stories are open-ended and could leave one feeling cheated.

The Exterminator's Daughter (Meg Cabot): This is the tale of Mary, a slayer who is trying to save her friend from a vampire. It contains Cabot's trademark humor and romance which allows fans of her other work to quickly liken to the story. It is told in two first person, present tense perspectives (Mary and Adam, a fellow classmate) which has the potential to be confusing if one doesn't read the chapter titles. The story was cute, but nothing special or entirely unique. And, while closure is given to the story's central plot, there are still some loose ends needed to be solved.

The Corsage (Lauren Myracle): This is the shortest story in the anthology. It was inspired by "The Monkey's Paw" and is an enjoyable retelling of the "be careful what you wish for" motif. Although predictable, it successfully establishes an eerie suspense that kept me hooked to the end. Out of all the stories, this is the only one that felt like it had complete closure.

Madison Avery and the Dim Reaper (Kim Harrison): I found this story to be the most engrossing but also the least satisfying, closure-wise. It develops a very interesting Reaper mythology and is very original. However, when it ends, it feels like there is much more left to be told of the story.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Ally S on January 29, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I'm a large fan of taking normal events and adding a fantastic/supernatural twist. For this reason I loved the idea and the majority of this book.

However, since it's a short story collection I don't think it should have been as open-ended as it was. Meg Cabot, although alluding to events coming in the future, ended the story. The Corsage was ended too. The other three however, were too much like book previews. If you write for a short story collection, write a short story. Granted, these authors are used to the novel and that could be the reason, but "Dim Reaper" dumped a lot of information and left you hanging. "Kiss and Tell" could have ended but threw in a cliche "she's a princess" twist and Hell on Earth was almost there. Almost

Still, I did enjoy the concept.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A. P. Kalvaitis on May 30, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book due to the Stephanie Meyer story. In general, this book was a disappointment. Only one story really hooked me. The rest were fairly bland. Not something I would re-read or highly recommend. Borrow from the library.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Robin L. McLaughlin on March 4, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book because I'm a huge Kim Harrison fan so wanted to read her story in it. I rarely ever read young adult fiction, so hadn't even realized this book existed until a few days ago, even though I have read the other "Hell" anthologies like Dates From Hell. I'm glad I finally discovered it!

I don't hand out five stars frivolously, but this anthology surely deserves it. I thought all five stories were solid and I thoroughly enjoyed reading all of them, even though it's been a few decades since I was a young adult myself. All of the authors were new to me except for Kim Harrison, which makes it a treat to discover others I may enjoy reading more of in the future.

The Exterminator's Daughter by Meg Cabot was a fun story that immediately drew me in. The character Mary is a typical teen outsider due to being new at the school she's attending and being different than other kids. Her differences are both mundane and unusual, such as being the daughter of an exterminator who is now a vampire herself. The story doesn't have much depth and is quite formulaic, but that isn't always a bad thing. After all, those formulas are successful for a reason! The story was a fun read that I enjoyed.

The Corsage by Lauren Myracle is one of those stories where you know where it's going but you have to keep reading anyway. The story is based on The Monkey's Paw and is a classic tale of the dangers of magical wishing, mostly because the wisher generally isn't smart enough to forsee consequences or believe there will be a cost exacted. The ending, while predictable, is suitably creepy in a Stephen Kingesque way. This was another fun read.

While I mentioned that the two above stories were fairly predictable, that should probably be put in perspective.
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