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Fear: 13 Stories of Suspense and Horror Paperback – September 2, 2010

4.0 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 6-10–A great line-up of authors including Alane Ferguson, Heather Brewer, and Peg Kehret contribute tales that are sure to amuse readers, but not necessarily scare them. The selections include vampires, werewolves, weird little children, jokes gone wrong, and a cannibalistic family who like to prey on new babysitters. The stories are entertaining, but most of them are pretty tame. One standout is Meg Cabot's “The Night Hunter,” a tale about a girl kidnapped by a bank robber wearing a clown mask who ultimately hopes to be rescued by the folk hero The Night Hunter, immortalized in a pop song. Jennifer Allison's “The Perfects” is the one tale in the bunch that is actually creepy and will leave readers with an uneasy feeling at the end. All of the stories are perfect for reading around a campfire or at a slumber party without causing too many sleepless moments. They're a good length and have that “Aha!” moment at the end.–Traci Glass, Eugene Public Library, ORα(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Stine’s name on the spine may promise things that go bump in the night, but scary stories are only part of what this schizophrenic collection offers: mystery, thriller, sci-fi, light paranormal, humor, and even superhero sagas all take their turns. There are more uninspired entries here than one would like (do we really need another vampire-versus-werewolf battle?), but this collection does one thing very well: it keeps the reading level consistent, which makes it a good entry point for reluctant readers moving on from Stine’s own oeuvre. By far the best story is Walter Sorrells’ “Tuition,” a surprise-after-surprise roller-coaster ride in which a teen safecracker celebrates a very unusual birthday. Also worthy of note is “Suckers,” by Suzanne Weyn, which features an ending Rod Serling would’ve died for, and “Piney Power,” about a family of backwoods misfits who enact their own special brand of justice. These three tales are plenty good enough to propel readers past slower patches. Grades 7-10. --Daniel Kraus --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Speak (September 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142417742
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142417744
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.8 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #98,803 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
R. L. Stine, often called the Stephen King of children's literature, has called upon the best and brightest young adult authors to contribute to FEAR. With stories by Meg Cabot, Heather Brewer and others, FEAR is sure to have you begging for a nightlight and checking under the bed, twice, before you even think of closing your eyes. Thirteen original stories await that will keep you turning pages and looking over your shoulder.

What if shadows came to life? Heather Brewer explores this question in "Shadow Children." Dax was convinced that his little brother, Jon, was overreacting when he begged for his nightlight. Jon insisted that the shadows would get him, and Dax didn't believe him until he saw Jon being pulled through the closet floor by shadow people. Dax and Jon were quickly sucked into a large cavern where a horrible truth awaited. The shadow children informed the brothers that they tired of the darkness and wanted to live where normal humans live --- by feeding on human souls. Filled with horror, Dax and Jon desperately try to find their way back home before it's too late.

Jennifer Allison puts an interesting spin on good old-fashioned babysitting in "The Perfects." Hannah is new to Entrails, Michigan, and is surprised that she is offered a babysitting job right away from her neighbors next door, the Perfect family. Hannah has spied the two children and baby in the backyard and thinks she can handle them. Most kids like Hannah, after all. Upon her arrival, Hannah is confused when Mrs. Perfect tells her there is no baby, just the two children. She is even more perplexed when the youngsters insist on watching surgeries and other television programs that deal with the carving and cutting of the human body.
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Format: Paperback
These thirteen tales of horror, mystery, and suspense are a perfect read for this Halloween season. Each is a twisted story from creepy creations to serial killers. Written for young adults, none are too graphic but have plenty of thrills and chills. Generally, I'm not a fan of short stories and anthologies. But these are easy reading and plenty of fun. Below is a short description of each story by each author:

R.L. Stine's "Welcome to the Club" - A boy is pressured to join a club by killing his mean boss.

Heather Graham's "She's Different Tonight" - A cruel boy messes with the wrong girl on Halloween.

Suzanne Weyn's "Suckers" - On a distant planet, humans keep disappearing.

Jennifer Allison's "The Perfects" - The Perfect's children are a babysitter's worst nightmare.

Heather Brewer's "Shadow Children" - A portal leads to another realm where shadow versions can replace human children.

Peg Kehret's "The Poison Ring" - The theft of a poison ring sends a girl on a trail of deception and danger.

Alane Ferguson's "Dragonfly Eyes" - A school shooter takes two girls hostage; and one will die.

Ryan Brown's "Jeepers Peepers" - A young boy's worst fears come true.

F. Paul Wilson's "Piney Power" - A mysterious community enacts their own brand of justice on trespassers.

Meg Cabot's "The Night Hunter" - Even heroes need a little help once in a while.

Walter Sorrells' "Tuition" - A boy pulls one more theft to pay for his college education.
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I was a little uneasy, buying this book. Some of Stine's post-Goosebumps (original series) books have disappointed me, but I love good ghost stories so I gave this a try.

I'm very happy with "Fear." The stories feature a lot of variety, and everything from "good scares" to "gotcha" endings that made me laugh out loud.

In general, this book didn't skimp on the "eeeuuuuwww!" factor, but it didn't make my stomach lurch, either. So, for me, it was a Goldilocks book ("just right!").

If you want a fun book to read at night when the moon is full and the wind makes the house creak, this is a good choice.
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Format: Paperback
Holy snot monkeys, I LOVE YA horror. The category is sorely lacking in all that is horror. Even if it's more compilations like FEAR, I'll take it. It makes me want to curl myself up in a blanket of nostalgia with a flashlight and read all night.

I always find it a little difficult to review anthologies like this because the writing in each story can vary so widely and quite frankly I don't want to nitpick short stories. So I'll review the book as a whole: phenomenal.

Stine knows his fear so when he rounded up his choices for this book, he hit each nail spot on the head in one single stroke. Each story was mired in creep factor but not all of them were your traditional horror stories, which I liked. As much as I love my classic horror, variety is always good. So while you have the creepy family living in the even creepier old Victorian next door, you have an issue with disappearing people on a planet filled with rich people. For each story the creep is distinct and will affect you in 13 different ways, each story with it's own unique bucket of creep.

My favorites were 'Welcome to the Club' by RL Stine (more of a psychological horror that makes you think, nothing paranormal which, I think, makes it scarier, using "normal" humans), 'Dragonfly Eyes' by Alane Ferguson (about a girl's death from her point of view post mortem), and 'Tagger' by James Rollins (about a Chinese girl dipping into her roots to destroy a demon intent on destroying her). Each are miles away from each other in terms of story but the creeper aspect brings them all back together.

If you have a night to yourself and are looking for a good scare with hints of nostalgia, pick up FEAR. It has every kind of horror story sampler you could want all wrapped up in 13 nicely pressed stories. The writing in each of them stands out as fantastic and each is written in such a way that it allows the horror to settled at the top, letting it be as spooky as it can be. I love it.
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