Reviewed by Jason Koivu
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Cue the scary music! For this is......The Mystery of Chimney Rock BWAHAHAHAAAAH!!! *cat sound!*
The fifth volume in the Choose Your Own Adventure series gets an extra star from me for some genuinely spooky moments. Yeah sure, it's just a haunted house story about kids snooping where they shouldn't, but if you allow yourself to be drawn into the moment, you'll find that Edward Packard wrote some scenes with a little Hitchcockian aura about them. Nicely atmosphered, indeed!
The drawbacks of The Mystery of Chimney Rock are that the stories often end too quickly and also that it suffers on one or two occasions from assumptive inclusions. What I mean is that people and things are named as if you have prior knowledge of them, and perhaps the character does, but you the reader do not, so that's a little confusing.
If you plan on reading this book, stop now! Do not continue on, for there be spoilers ahead…
Here are the storylines I just read in prep for the review:
1) Refused to go into the haunted house again and again like a big old coward until finally the story came to an end. It was late when I started reading and I got scared...
2) Followed my braver cousin Jane into the Chimney Rock house. Ran into the old lady who apparently haunts it. She creeps about acting all creepy like a creep. I went looking for Jane in the attic and mysteriously ended up shrinking down to nothing.
3) Grabbed hold of my balls finally and went into the house before my female cousin. Found the old lady's cat and brought it home with me. Because of a
4) Made it down into a wine cellar type place and then me and my cousin got buried alive. My 2nd least favorite way to die in real life. (First is having my face eaten off by a bat.)
5) Snuck upstairs and apparently gave the old lady a heart attack that killed her. The policeman on the scene essentially said, "Oh you kids" and lets us go free.
6) The disgusting caretaker let me into the house. I chased after the cat, found the maid and old lady, and end up giving her another deadly heart attack. Old people suck at life.