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Scary Stories 3: More Tales to Chill Your Bones
Synopses & Reviews
The girl was late getting home for supper. So she took a shortcut through the cemetery. But, oh, it made her nervous. When she saw another girl ahead of her, she hurried to catch up.
"Do you mind if I walk with you?" she asked. "Walking through the cemetery at night scares me."
"I know what you mean," the other girl said. "I used to feel that way myself when I was alive."
There are all sorts of things that scare us.
The dead scare us, for one day we will be dead like they are.
The dark scares us, for we don't know what is waiting in the dark. At night the sound of leaves rustling, or branches groaning, or someone whispering, makes us uneasy. So do footsteps coming closer. So do strange figures we think we see in the shadows--a human maybe, or a big animal, or some horrible thing we can barely make out.
People call these creatures we think we see "boo men." We imagine them, they say. But now and then a boo man turns out to be real.
Queer happenings scare us, too. We hear of a boy or a girl who was raised by an animal, a human being like us who yelps and howls and runs on all fours. The thought of it makes our flesh crawl. We hear of insects that make their nests in a person's body or of a nightmare that comes true, and we shudder. If such things really do happen, then they could happen to us.
It is from such fears that scary stories grow. This is the third book of such stories I have collected. I learned some of them from people I met. I found others, tales that had been written down, in folklore archives and in libraries. As we always do with tales we learn, I have told them in my own way.
Some stories in this book have been told only in recenttimes. But others have been part of our folklore for as long as we know. As one person told another, the details may have changed. But the story itself has not, for what once frightened people still frightens them.
Are the stories in this book true? The one I call "'The Trouble" is true. I cant be sure about the others. Most may have at least a little truth, for strange things sometimes happen, and people love to tell about them and turn them into even better stories.
Nowadays most people say that they don't believe in ghosts and queer happenings and such. Yet they still fear the dead and the dark. And they still see boo men waiting in the shadows. And they still tell scary stories, just as people always have.
-- Alvin Schwartz
A sixteen-year-old boy worked on his grandfather's horse farm. One morning he drove a pickup truck into town on an errand. While he was walking along the main street, he saw Death. Death beckoned to him.
The boy drove back to the farm as fast as he could and told his grandfather what had happened. "Give me the truck," he begged. "'I'll go to the city. He'll never find me there."
His grandfather gave him the truck, and the boy sped away. After he left, his grandfather went into town looking for Death. When he found him, he asked, "Why did you frighten my grandson that way? He is only sixteen. He is too young to die."
"I am sorry about that,"said Death. "I did not mean to beckon to him. But I was surprised to see him here. You see, I have an appointment with him this afternoon--in the city."
The Bus Stop
Ed Cox was driving home from work in a rainstorm. While he waited for a traffic light to change, he saw a young woman standing alone at a bus stop. She had no umbrella and was soaking wet.
"Are you going toward Farmington?" he called.
"Yes, I am," she said.
"Would you like a ride home?"
"I would," she said, and she got in. "My name is Joanna Finney. Thank you for rescuing me."
"I'm Ed Cox," he said, "and you're welcome."
On the way they talked and talked. She told him about her family and her job and where she had gone to school, and he told her about himself. By the time they got to her house, the rain had stopped.
"I'm glad it rained," Ed said. "Would you like to go out tomorrow after work?"
"I'd love to," Joanna said.
She asked him to meet her at the bus stop, since it was near her office. They had such a good time, they went out many times after that. Always they would meet at the bus stop, and off they would go. Ed liked her more each time he saw her.
But one night when they had a date to go out, Joanna did not appear. Ed waited at the bus stop for almost an hour. "Maybe something is wrong," he thought, and he drove to her house in Farmington.
An older woman came to the door. "I'm Ed Cox," he said. "Maybe Joanna told you about me. I had a date with her tonight. We were supposed to meet at the bus stop near her office. But she didn't show up. Is she all right?"
The woman looked at him as if he had said something strange. "I am Joanna's mother," she said slowly. "Joanna isn't here now. Butwhy don't you come in?"
Ed pointed to a picture on the mantel. "That looks just like her," he said.
"It did, once," her mother replied. "But that picture was taken when she was your age-about twenty years ago. A few days later she was waiting in the rain at that bus stop. A car hit her, and she was killed."
More traditional and modern-day stories of ghosts, haunts, superstitions, monsters, and horrible scary things.
Storytellers know — just as they have for hundreds and hundreds of years — that everyone enjoys a good, scary story!
Alvin Schwartz's Scary Stories 3 joins his other popular collections of scary folklore, Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark and More Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark, to give readers spooky, funny and fantastic tales guaranteed to raise goose bumps.
Who is the Wolf girl? Why is a hearse filled with men with yellow glowing eyes? Can a nightmare become reality? How do you avoid an appointment with Death?
Stephen Gammell's splendidly creepy drawings perfectly capture the mood of more than two dozens scary stories — and even a scary song — all just right for reading along or for telling aloud in the dark..
About the Author
Alvin Schwartz is known for his more than two dozen books of folklore for young readers that explore everything from wordplay and humor to tales and legends of all kinds. Don't miss his other Scary Stories collections, including More Scary Stories To Tell in the Dark and Scary Stories 3.
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