About the book...
In R.L. Stine's A Midsummer Night's Scream, the Master of Horror takes on the Master of Theatre!
Oh, what fools these actors be!
It was a horror movie that turned into real horror--three young actors lost their lives while the camera rolled. Production stopped, and people claimed that the movie was cursed.
Sixty years later, new actors are venturing onto the haunted set. In a desperate attempt to revive their failing studio, Claire's dad has green-lit a remake of Mayhem Manor—and Claire and her friends are dying to be involved.
At first, Claire laughs at Jake’s talk of ghosts and curses. He’s been too busy crushing on her best friend Delia to notice that she’s practically been throwing herself at him. What does he know? And anyway, this is her big chance to be a star!
When shooting starts, though, the set is plagued by a series of horrible accidents—could history be repeating itself?
First off, that cover! Definitely eye catching and uber creepy. I mean the drama mask is spooky enough but add the limp and BLOODY hand to the mix and well we pretty much know we're not about to stroll down the yellow brick road.
Second....I LOVE the original play/story A MidSummer Night's Dream by the Bard himself. I was forced to read it in 7th grade English (though forced is merely used here because it was assigned not chosen) and though the language can trip your tongue and the meanings allude you at first glance, it is a classic for a reason. There are so many layers to peel back when examining the story let alone the actual plot line that....that would take another post. Today however focuses on the modern day counterpart we see here. How does it stack up? Well....
After the initial appeal of both original story, cover and of course the author himself (surprisingly, I've never actually READ his other works...just know of them as his name's always been synonymous with a good scare), that's about where the bright-shiny-new-toy aspect wore off for me. I couldn't connect with the characters (and it was not the age difference between us, trust me) and their lack of depth was slightly infuriating. The run-spot-run formula that the plot line followed was WAY too predictable and when it wasn't....just simply odd. There wasn't enough theatrics in this reproduction for me, perhaps making it a better fit for those that simply know of the original, but haven't read it yet. I will definitely grant Mr. Stine mad props for his death scenes. Though some were too much to believe, others were memorable enough to set the hairs on the back of your neck on end.
Overall, I wasn't as impressed as I imagined I might be; so that was definitely a downer. However, for those just becoming acquainted with the original story, those that don't mind the impossible being granted possible with an edge of absurdity, it will hit the mark in abundance. Go into it with both eyes open, even for the gory scenes (yes, the author definitely lives up to his name in a nausea inducing scene or two) and you'll see sights you hadn't anticipated as well as some you might not wish to see again...like ever. Think Mikey Myers in hairy garden gnome form. *blink* Yeah....that about sums that up.
Recommended read for teens of all ages and older; the content isn't blush worthy in the least but those more impressionable or prone to the power of suggestion may be sleeping with a light on for a while....and avoiding creepy butt houses where death seemed to wait upon the stoop for any to pass by.
ARC for review received courtesy of Ksenia at Macmillan Children's Publishing Group. (THANKS!) For more information on this title as well as their ever expanding catalog of bookish wonders, be sure to stop by their official site, catch up on their blog, friend them on Pinterest, like them on Facebook, or follow along on Twitter. This title was released via Feiwel & Friends just this month and should be available on a bookstore shelf near you.
Until next time...I bid thee fair thoughts and wondrous dreams...and of course, happy reading!