Monday, 1 July 2013

Tales from Lovecraft Middle School #1 - Professor Gargoyle by Charles Gilman (Quirk Books)

The spookiest covers in children's chapter books? You betcha!
I've been taking a look at a fab range of children's chapter books that are a little on the spooky side. One look at the lenticular covers (as you can see above, these slowly transform right before your eyes as you move the cover around) might be enough to sell this range of books to you, but what about the books themselves? How good are they?

In "Tales from Lovecraft Middle School" Book 1, we're introduced to our hero, Robert Arthur, as he begins his first year at Lovecraft Middle School. Most of his friends have gone on to other schools. Unfortunately for Robert, the school bully Glenn Torkells is still around, and still extracting "Nerd Tax" every time he sees Robert. One of the many annoyances about Robert's first few days at the school.

Most of the other kids in class seem a bit weird and distant, except for one girl, Karina Ortiz, who urges Robert to stick up for himself against Glenn. Karina isn't quite as she seems though as Robert finds out later in the book (I won't spoil the twist).

In fact Karina isn't the only odd thing around Lovecraft Middle School. Kids disappear, and one particular teacher - the science teacher, Professor Goyle - seems more menacing than others.

Weird things start happening too. A plague of rats erupt from children's lockers (and one particular two-headed rat is soon adopted by Robert as a fuzzy friend), and the school library is a bizarre portal to another realm as Robert, Karina and eventually Glenn (who Robert saves from a particularly nasty near-miss) discover that Lovecraft Middle School is seriously warped in every sense of the word.

Charles Gilman's spooky stories have a whiff of Eerie, Indiana about them, and there are plenty of spooky goings-on to entertain kids who love the supernatural or a good old fashioned monstrous tale. It'll be interesting to see how the series develops. "Professor Gargoyle" was a neat introduction, a nice easy read but with plenty of spookiness to carry it through. I'm currently reading the second book (The Slither Sisters) and now the introductions of the main characters and the grist of the story have been laid down, Slither Sisters feels a lot more involved and sinister.

Perfect early readers for children. The books aren't particularly scary but they're great fun and those covers just leap out at you, who could possibly resist!

Tales from Lovecraft Middle School #1 - Professor Gargoyle by Charles Gilman, is available from Quirk Books and of course your friendly local independent bookstore.



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Monday, 1 July 2013

Tales from Lovecraft Middle School #1 - Professor Gargoyle by Charles Gilman (Quirk Books)

The spookiest covers in children's chapter books? You betcha!
I've been taking a look at a fab range of children's chapter books that are a little on the spooky side. One look at the lenticular covers (as you can see above, these slowly transform right before your eyes as you move the cover around) might be enough to sell this range of books to you, but what about the books themselves? How good are they?

In "Tales from Lovecraft Middle School" Book 1, we're introduced to our hero, Robert Arthur, as he begins his first year at Lovecraft Middle School. Most of his friends have gone on to other schools. Unfortunately for Robert, the school bully Glenn Torkells is still around, and still extracting "Nerd Tax" every time he sees Robert. One of the many annoyances about Robert's first few days at the school.

Most of the other kids in class seem a bit weird and distant, except for one girl, Karina Ortiz, who urges Robert to stick up for himself against Glenn. Karina isn't quite as she seems though as Robert finds out later in the book (I won't spoil the twist).

In fact Karina isn't the only odd thing around Lovecraft Middle School. Kids disappear, and one particular teacher - the science teacher, Professor Goyle - seems more menacing than others.

Weird things start happening too. A plague of rats erupt from children's lockers (and one particular two-headed rat is soon adopted by Robert as a fuzzy friend), and the school library is a bizarre portal to another realm as Robert, Karina and eventually Glenn (who Robert saves from a particularly nasty near-miss) discover that Lovecraft Middle School is seriously warped in every sense of the word.

Charles Gilman's spooky stories have a whiff of Eerie, Indiana about them, and there are plenty of spooky goings-on to entertain kids who love the supernatural or a good old fashioned monstrous tale. It'll be interesting to see how the series develops. "Professor Gargoyle" was a neat introduction, a nice easy read but with plenty of spookiness to carry it through. I'm currently reading the second book (The Slither Sisters) and now the introductions of the main characters and the grist of the story have been laid down, Slither Sisters feels a lot more involved and sinister.

Perfect early readers for children. The books aren't particularly scary but they're great fun and those covers just leap out at you, who could possibly resist!

Tales from Lovecraft Middle School #1 - Professor Gargoyle by Charles Gilman, is available from Quirk Books and of course your friendly local independent bookstore.



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Post a Comment