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The darkly wonderful world of Spooksville

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The Secret Path - Book 1 of Spooksville by Christopher Pike
Christopher Pike

Christopher Pike is one of those authors that all teenagers should be familiar with. As he wrote the series Chain Letter, The last Vampire, and Remember Me in addition to a multitude of Teen Classics. In my opinion some of his best work is the lesser known children’s horror series Spooksville. These short imaginative stories can be read as stand alone novels to the readers immense enjoyment, but when you read the complete series from start to finish you are totally immersed in a fun but scary world full of magic and unknown that every child dreams of.

To be fully honest I re-read these stories recently and although they do lose some of the excitement and mysticism that you feel as a kid, they still invoke in me the same joy as when I first read them. The series begins with Adam Freeman a 12 year old kid moving into the small town of Springville with his family. Upon moving he immediately comes across one Sally Wilcox who quickly and frankly explains to him that the town’s real name is Spooksville where ghosts, aliens, and killer robots are real and haunt the town. Adam as most kids would do dismisses Sally’s stories as just that stories, little does he know that he has moved into the scariest and most mysterious town in the world.

The series focuses around 4 friends Adam Freeman, Sally Wilcox, Cindy Makey, and Watch whose real name is shrouded in mystery. However the reason for his nickname is due to the multitude of wrist watches he wears. The series evolves as these friends land themselves in adventure after adventure as they explore the town and surroundings of Spooksville, where they encounter ghosts, aliens, monsters, alternate dimensions and a immense world of creatures out to get them for one reason or another.

To tie the series together the town is populated with various eccentric characters including a town bum and witch. Bum used to be the former mayor of Springville but has since found himself much happier as the town bum and also acts as the main keeper of town lore and its secrets often helping the gang out on their quests or helping them to get into one. Ann Templeton however is a witch and the great great .. grand daughter of Madam Templeton the original witch of Spooksville. In addition to being a witch she also lives in a castle and thoroughly frightens the children of the town.

The Secret path introduces the reader to most of the major characters and places they will eventually explore, as the team hops around town in search of a path leading to an alternate dimension that could lead them to their fondest dreams or worst nightmares. Their quest leads them to danger after terrifying danger and that is only in search of the path, the true horror lies ahead. An excellent introduction to a series of novels that in my opinion are better written and more entertaining then any of the other children’s horror series of the same time period.

Other Childrens Horror Series you may enjoy:

The Curse of Camp Cold Lake - Goosebumps Series by R.L. Stine Your Momma's a Werewolf - Book 18 of Shivers Series by M.D. Spenser The Substitute Creature - Book 1 of Spinetinglers by M. T. Coffin
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