Published by Scholastic
Summary: Mister Shivers begins his book with a letter to the reader, relating how he found a box on his doorstep that contained a tree branch, a doll’s eye, a piece of an old quilt, and a toy’s rusty head. Beside the box was a dead mouse. He is sharing the five stories that were in that box. A brother and sister go into a house and find a creepy doll…that talks. A girl is annoyed with a long hair in the back of her throat…until the doctor grabs it and pulls out a dead mouse. A boy’s mother buys a creep statue that always has to be wrapped in a quilt. When Oliver forgets to bring his toys inside, the unhappy toys seek revenge. Finally, a girl is told that the nighttime scraping sounds he hears is caused by a branch, but she wakes up to find her window scratched on the inside. Includes instructions for drawing Buddy [the creepy] Bear. 64 pages; grades K-2.
Pros: Most scary story collections for this age group are silly, but some of these tales are genuinely creepy. I confess that those vengeful toys freaked me out a bit, and the endings of that and the scratched window one were certainly unsettling. The dark, somewhat gothic illustrations channel Edward Gorey, adding to the spooky fun. I can almost guarantee this series will be a huge hit with newly independent readers. Book 2 is due out July 2020.
Cons: While many will love this book, some kids may be truly scared by these stories. Proceed with caution!