Uncanny!

Paul Jennings, Author Viking Children's Books $13.95 (140p) ISBN 978-0-670-84174-5
Horror story fans are sure to be drawn to the titles and eerie jacket illustrations of these two volumes; however, those expecting the genre's traditional fare may be taken aback by the author's Monty Pythonesque sense of humor in scenes featuring mischievous specters, spattering dung and exploding bits of flesh. While some of the tales in Unreal! come off as gross jokes with clever punch lines, the second collection contains more intricate and intriguing yarns that recall Twilight Zone episodes. ``On the Bottom'' concerns a dying man's tattoos that come to life long enough to find a new resting place. ``Know All'' reveals the mishaps that occur when a family opens an old trunk of magical circus costumes. The strength of Jennings's writing lies in original precepts and unexpected plot twists. For the most part, characterizations remain one-dimensional and somewhat sexist (only one of the 17 stories has a female protagonist). Ultimately, these books provide light, fast-paced entertainment sure to satisfy appetites for the grotesque. Ages 10-up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991
Release date: 10/01/1991
Paperback - 156 pages - 978-0-14-037576-3
Compact Disc - 3 pages - 978-1-74093-413-8
Paperback - 140 pages - 978-0-14-034909-2
Analog Audio Cassette - 3 pages - 978-1-74030-595-2
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