Thursday, October 20, 2011

Thriller (Guys Read)

Thriller (Guys Read)
ed. Jon Scieszka
HarperCollins, 2011. 272 pgs. Short Stories

Second in the Guys Read series' collections (after Funny Business), Thriller assembles natural and supernatural tales intended to encourage boys to read, as an extension of Jon Scieszka's Guys Read website. Unfortunately, the stories in this volume run a bit flat--not as thrilling as one might have hoped. Several are funnier than they are scary; e.g., Anthony Horowitz's "The Double Eagle has Landed," starring the doofy Diamond Brothers, or "Pudding," a Lunch-Lady-like cartoon story that ends unexpectedly. Gennifer Choldenko's "The Snake Mafia" has scary moments, and scary characters. Both James Patterson and Walter Dean Myers have contributed stories with a moral to the story. Most of the pieces in this collection are well-written, as one might expect from the A-list authors who have contributed, but not close to as scary or suspenseful as, say, most any story from the classic British tradition of spooky stuff. Does have a great cover, though!

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