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In a Dark, Dark Room and Other Scary Stories (I Can Read! Reading 2) Paperback – October 2, 1985

4.6 out of 5 stars 193 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 1–3—This collection of short stories (HarperCollins, 1984) retold by Alvin Schwartz are just creepy enough to give youngsters shivers without causing nightmares. The seven tales were collected from a variety of sources and include some classics such as "The Green Ribbon" (holding on a severed head) and "The Night It Rained" (a man discovers that his hitchhiker was a ghost). Dirk Zimmer performs the stories in a sepulchral tone with a measured pace and different voices for the characters. Background music is light and seems deliberately designed to lessen the scary mood. This Level 2 I Can Read book is perfect for younger children who are constantly pestering the librarian for "something scary."—Teresa Bateman, Brigadoon Elementary School, Federal Way, WA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

In a dark, dark room, in a soft, soft voice, tell a scary story--It; s fun! It's fun to scare your friends with stories about ghosts and pirates, skeletons and strange happenings. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 430L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (October 1, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0064440907
  • ISBN-13: 978-0064440905
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (193 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,478 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I'm nineteen years old, and I still remember the day I found this book in my school library when I was six. I was enamoured, and checked it out numerous times before another student lost it. I was a bookworm as a child, having read hundreds of books in a matter of years, and this book still stands as one of the truly unforgettable books I read in my youth. I believe it is the powerful imagery of the book that has stuck with me all these years, and made it impossible for me to forget.

Granted, it is not for everyone, and some children might benefit from reading it at an older age. I remember being slightly perturbed by some of the ideas and nuances presented in the book. However, I doubt highly that it would truly disturb any child that was mature enough to approach the book thoughtfully.

An initial parental reading might be something to consider.
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By A Customer on October 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
I remember when I got this book. It was near Halloween and I had to go to Burlington coat factory with my grandma. I saw this book and asked her if I could get it. She said okay. I was eight years old. I took it back to her house and read it that night. My favorite story was 'The Green Ribbon'. I took it to school with me the following Monday so that my teacher would read it to us and she got excited when she saw 'The Green Ribbon' because it was a story she was looking for that was told to her when she was a child. I love this book and I recommend it to you, but I do think that if you're a parent, you might want to see if your child can handle some of these stories. Aside from that, this is a fine bit of literature and will be cherished by many people for years to come.
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Format: Paperback
This is one of the first books I remember reading as a kid and it freaked me out so much! Looking back, the stories aren't anything to get even remotely scared about, but there is something great about this book when you're a kid. I must have read this book 15 times in one year. I still remember the stories, and I've even reminisced about it with my friends. A must have in any childhood.
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By A Customer on June 17, 2003
Format: Paperback
I remember first looking at this book after my Kindergarten teacher had finished reading it. I loved it so much and I remember thinking it was the most wonderful book in the world. I had totally forgotten what the title of the book was and it wasn't until recently that I stumbled upon it and bought it. The stories are great and sometimes a bit humorous if you have a morbid sense of humor that is. Anyway, I now read it to my little brother and he loves it. This is one of those scary story books that's scary, but not too scary to keep kids up at night. It's an excellent investment to make and it's something I'm almost positive a child will treasure forever.
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Format: Paperback
My 6 year old son loved this book so much he couldn't put it down! It was very refreshing to find a book that is different from the usual happy-sappy children's books. It was spooky enough to keep him interested but not so scary that it frightened him.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is difficult to find scary Halloween books that are successfully written for the primary grades. I have a shelf of suitably scary books for grades three and up but, telling a story that is just scary enough, but not to scary for grades Pre-K- 2 is a challenge. This book succeeds beautifully.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of my 6-year old daughters dislikes reading but is willing to read this book aloud (and to herself) again and again because she loves the stories. I appreciate that the level of scariness is just right and the wording is impartial enough to distance the child from the action. Some stories are made with the purpose of "jumping out" at the reader, but even these surprise style stories are mild enough for both of my daughters. As someone who loves reading and used to read a lot of horror and folklore I also enjoyed recognizing some of the plots as cleaned up versions of classic stories. The illustrations are also very good. Yes, scary things are shown but in a mild way. I especially appreciate the cover image and the opposite illustration inside. I wish there were other stories of this exact level out there!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My (almost) 3 year old loooooves this book! He doesn't get scared easily and loves ghosts, pirates and all things spooky. If your child gets scared easily, just look at the cover and read the title, it probably isn't a good book for them. When I first read it my first thought was "What the *heck* is this?? How is this a book for kids??" Especially about the girl named Jenny whos head falls off.. But for some reason my son thought that was funny and that's his favourite story in the book.
Anyways, a must buy for kids who love halloween and spooky things!
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