by Johnathan Rand
Overall: 3 out of 5
Personal Evaluation: Ew, spiders. Really – I never read Goosebumps or anything even remotely creepy and hate scary movies and books (Harry Potter was pushing it). So I skimmed this one as best I could and tried not to read it at night! Other than a few typos, though, it wasn’t too bad.
What might interest children: Definitely the gross factor, and the cliffhangers at the end of each chapter. Short chapters and lots of action would hook even very reluctant readers, and the language seemed fairly easy, again for readers who might not be as strong. I was surprised to reach the end of the book with lots of pages to go – I had forgotten about the teaser to the next book, which might also be something that would interest children. Also, based on my experience of this book being unknown in the Boston area, I think it’s definitely a niche for Michigan kids, who will want books of their hometown or where they’ve gone on vacation. I can’t speak for the American Chillers series, but it definitely has not caught on over here.