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Goosebumps Horrorland: #4: The Scream of the Haunted Mask

Review

Goosebumps Horrorland: #4: The Scream of the Haunted Mask

THE SCREAM OF THE HAUNTED MASK starts off with a bang as Carly Beth fights to control her mind against the pull of the Haunted Mask in the basement. Carly Beth repeatedly tries to stop herself from creeping down the stairs to the basement in the middle of the night, but she is being pulled against her every effort to resist. Her heart pounds and she can barely breathe as she opens the old black box and takes out the mask. She can't help putting it on her head. When she finally screams and manages to yank it off, the mask begins to scream.

The next day on the school bus, Carly Beth's best friend Sabrina wonders why she looks so tired. Sabrina was there during the previous year's Halloween when the Haunted Mask first began to exert its power by changing Carly Beth into an angry and evil creature. Carly Beth doesn't hesitate to tell her the whole story. Sabrina urges Carly Beth to get rid of it, but Carly Beth knows that the only way to stop it is with a token of love.

Carly Beth and Sabrina are chatting with some of the kids on the bus when Carly Beth can no longer hear them. All she can hear is a loud, shrill, terrifying scream. It's the Haunted Mask's scream…and it's coming from inside Carly Beth's brain. When the screaming finally dies down, she is dizzy and sick.

When the girls get to their part-time jobs, helping at an after-school program set in an old farmhouse, Carly Beth is able to forget her mask troubles, at least temporarily. But then she hears a weird sound coming from the old, abandoned stable. As she and Sabrina approach it, Laura, another worker, screams, warning them away from it.

Laura's voice trembles as she tells them what once happened in the old stable, which was a luxurious riding stable long ago. It seems that the people in the farmhouse heard screaming coming from the stable late one night. The horses were screaming. When the people came running, they found that every horse had gone berserk, stampeded and then died of fear. They crushed the stable boy under their hooves; he also died. And then Laura tells Carly Beth and Sabrina something that shocks them to the core of their beings. The stable boy had been wearing a horrible Halloween mask…and now the stable was supposedly haunted. The stable boy's ghost will not leave the stable until he gets his Halloween mask back.

Could it be the very same mask that is turning Carly Beth's life upside down? That's the question she keeps asking herself, even as Sabrina persuades her to explore the old stable in the dark of the night. Will Carly Beth survive as Halloween again approaches?

THE SCREAM OF THE HAUNTED MASK is another great ghost story coupled with the continuing HorrorLand series story that ties the characters from the previous books in the series together in a plot that will make you tremble…and watch the bookstore shelves for book #5, DR. MANIAC VS. ROBBY SCHWARTZ.

Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon on August 1, 2008

Goosebumps Horrorland: #4: The Scream of the Haunted Mask
by R. L. Stine

  • Publication Date: August 1, 2008
  • Mass Market Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks
  • ISBN-10: 0439918723
  • ISBN-13: 9780439918725