From Publishers Weekly
Fifth-grader Franny sees a connection between a sudden fad and writer I.M. Fine's latest Chillers book. "Superior entertainment, this work should engage both ambitious readers and diehard fans of the genre it satirizes," said PW in a starred review. Ages 8-12. (Aug.)
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-Stanley explores the power of the written word in this lively suspense story. Franny and her family have just relocated to Baltimore, the latest in a long series of moves. Almost immediately, the fifth grader notices that practically everyone in her new school is crazy about Jelly Worms candy, made popular by the latest title in the "Chillers" series of horror novels that is making the rounds. It's an innocent enough fad, but then events take an insidious turn. First, a virus seemingly strikes only those who have read the next book in the series. Then, Sinister Serpent Surprise is published and an epidemic of snakelike behavior sweeps through schools across America. Franny is convinced that, somehow, the books induced these symptoms and determines to track down the reclusive author. Using reference material at the local library and the Internet, she and her friend Beamer find Ida May Fine. They discover that, indeed, Ida is using her books to avenge her father's death many years ago, and that her next book will be the ultimate weapon. Stanley's writing captures the flavor of horror novels, and at the same time brings in themes ranging from the House Un-American Activities Committee to the popularity of horror series and the effect of frequent relocation on children. This book will be enjoyed by fans of R. L. Stine and also by those who love a good mystery.
Terrie Dorio, Santa Monica Public Library, CA
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.