The wind whispered through the vines, making them quiver and bend. The scarecrows creaked, shaking their arms as if waving us away. A large pumpkin came bouncing down a hill. Thud thud thud!
A child loses his head inside a pumpkin. A skin-crawling spider spell is cast on a sorcerer's apprentice. A visit to the hospital for a tonsillectomy takes a ghoulish turn. These things don't happen--do they? In Nightmare Hour they do. The fiendishly prolific R.L. Stine, author of the Goosebumps series, offers 10 scary tales to keep you up late, quivering beneath the covers. Each heart-pounding, fast-paced story features lively writing and young characters who come into contact with the tricks and illusions on life's darker side. Curious readers will love the author's introduction to each story, where he explains how the idea for it came to him. From "Alien Candy" to "Make Me a Witch," the stories also feature a spooky illustration by artists from Edward Koren to Bleu Turrell. While not gory, some of the book's situations, such as the hospital visit gone wrong, are not for the faint-hearted reader. For the rest, these are tales you'll be too scared to put down. (Ages 10 and older) --Maria Dolan [via]