Thursday, April 21, 2016

Review: Can You Keep a Secret? by R.L.Stine

April 12, 2016
St. Martin's Press
There are a few secrets to be kept in Can You Keep a Secret? by R.L. Stine. Emma and Eddie are fooling around in the woods. Eddie decides to carve their names on a tree. In the process, they find a suitcase full of money hidden in the tree. Their friends catch wind of the discovery and they all decide to hide the suitcase in a grave in a pet cemetery where Eddie works.

Meanwhile, Emma has been having nightmares that she is a big black violent wolf. Her sister Sophie tries to comfort her and says the nightmares must go back to when she was a small child and got bitten by a dog while they were visiting their Aunt Marta outside of Prague.

So, secrets. Is Emma really a wolf? Who stole the money and are they going to come after the kids since Emma and Eddie's names are on the tree?

This book is an R.L. Stine Fear Street novel. It reads like one. He has a pattern where the chapters often end with a cliffhanger or a startling moment of clarity. It makes for suspenseful reading. I find myself wondering which version of the truth is the right one as he puts the characters through the ringer. There are deaths and mysteries to keep it moving right along.

The one thing I wasn't really sure about was the appearance of Aunt Marta at one point in the book. She didn't seem to advance the plot all that much. Her stay was very brief with little description.

Some of the description in the book is kind of gross. I don't want to go into it much because it would make spoilers.

The book is definitely aimed at YA readers. I can see kids graduating from the Goosebumps series to the Fear Street series. I still found myself enjoying it even though I am an adult. I wanted to know what was going to happen next.

I give this book 3 stars. It has everything you need for a good horror story and mystery. While it is a good book, it is not outstanding. I would still recommend it for YA horror readers with strong stomachs.

Have you read any of the Fear Street books? What has been your experience with them?

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.