Thursday, December 1, 2011

(Review) Scary School by Derek the Ghost

Summery from Goodreads:
You think your school's scary? Get a load of these teachers:
Ms. Fang, an 850-year-old vampire
Dr. Dragonbreath, who just might eat you before recess
Mr. Snakeskin—science class is so much more fun when it's taught by someone who's half zombie
Mrs. T—break the rules and spend your detention with a hungry Tyrannosaurus rex!
Plus
Gargoyles, goblins, and Frankenstein's monster on the loose The world's most frighteningly delicious school lunch
And
The narrator's an eleven-year-old ghost!
Join Charles "New Kid" Nukid as he makes some very Scary friends—including Petunia, Johnny, and Peter the Wolf—and figures out that Scary School can be just as funny as it is spooky!
4.5/5 stars/zombies/monsters

      When I received this copy of the novel for review (sent by the author, thank you Derek!) I had little idea what to expect, though I'd known it was a middle grade novel. Disclaimer: all opinions from here on are my own. I really enjoyed the read. It was a thick book (for middle grade) but all the chapters were relatively short and ended resolved. The illustrations were the perfect touch, covering many of the pages with characters and events. Because of the placement of the pictures, I was able to quickly attach the words to the image without spoiling myself or feeling the pictures misrepresented the words.
     The novel did remind me, in structure and format, of Classroom at the End of the Hall by Douglas Evans (which I read in fifth grade and loved), but it had a unique twist and voice I've not seen in other novels I've read. The narration was generally very fun although I occasionally forgot the narrator existed and had a difficult time overlooking the occasional 'more on that later'. I do think, however, that the repetition would be good for younger readers.
     I, personally, am definitely passing this on to a great friend of mine whose younger brother is just getting into reading. I think it's a great novel to read aloud at night, perhaps one chapter a night, because it's so fun (and not scary, though it does mention lots of things generally considered scary). I recommend this book to new, young readers or readers look for a light, fun, easy read. It was a great way to get back to reading in December! -Caressa

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