Sunday, October 15, 2017

Young Scrooge by R. L. Stine

Young Scrooge is a stand-alone novel, and separate from R. L. Stine’s famed Goosebumps series. Young Scrooge hits the paperback racks just in time for Halloween. It’s typical Stine all the way, entertaining, and easy to read. Stine is a consistent writer, so those of you familiar with his work will be right at home with this homage to Charles Dickens. It should be noted that Young Scrooge is neither a sequel nor a prequel or a continuation of A Christmas Carol; in fact, Young Scrooge is an original tale, with a nod toward Charles Dickens, but comprised of R. L. Stine’s own blend of wickedness and humor. This is the story about Rick Scroogeman, a school bully who hates A Christmas Carol, hates Christmas, and spends most of his time fabricating cruel pranks to play on his classmates. He is obviously not popular, and he’s clueless as to the negative effect he has on those around him. When the first of three ghosts visits him, Scroogeman is subjected to the same type of bullying he’d been dishing out. The three ghosts don’t relent, and poor Scroogeman is put through the wringer, which you’d expect. Stine handles this swiftly and never lingers in one place too long. I have promoted Stine’s books multiple times on this blog, and I’ll continue doing so. His books are aimed at young readers, and if this gets young people reading – and continuing to read – then I’m all for it. R. L. Stine is a national treasure. His wild imagination and sense of playfulness compliment the spookiness. Young Scrooge doesn’t disappoint. 

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