So why not grab a copy and join the discussion with this months #PointHorrorBookClub
Teachers Pet by Richie Tankersley Cusick
Are the Point Horror books we loved as a teenager still our favourites on a re-read? Have they not stood the test of time? After a hit of nostalgia? Or are you new to Point Horror and want to see what its all about?
Want to explore previous #PointHorrorBookClub posts? I’ve got you! Head to the main page here
Kate will do anything to be the teacher’s pet
An aspiring horror writer, Kate likes a little scare. When offered a spot at an exclusive weeklong writing conference, she jumps at the chance to go. After all, it’s taught by William Drewe, the master of horror himself.
But strangely, when Kate arrives, William Drewe is nowhere to be found. Filling in for him is his brother, Gideon, whose assignments give Kate the thrills she seeks. With a teacher like this, she’ll get all the material she needs to become a bestselling author . . . if she survives.
Look what the cat dragged in….
Okay ….so…What’s It All About?
Kate Rawlins loves to be scared and wants to write a book someday that will really terrify people! She has bagged herself a writers conference trip with her teacher, Miss Bunceton after winning an annual fiction competition to a remote writer retreat in a camp in the woods. With the possibility of meeting one of her favourite authors, William Drewe she is very excited! Assigned to cabin thirteen some crazy things begin to happen!
Crazy Things? Oh No!
Yep! Kate discovers a severed hand! Or was it a glove? And then when skinny dipping someone pinches and slashes all her clothes! Her cabin is broken into and she thinks someone is following her in the creepy woods!
Following her in the woods? Who’s there to protect her?
She befriends a lovely boy called Denzil and a girl called Tawney, but also falls in love with Gideon who’s best friend is Pearce who Kate ends up kissing too and it’s like Point Horror has taken a trip to Love Island!
Awwwww this sounds like a nice Point Horror!
Did I mention that something gets killed in Kate’s bath? No!? Opppsssiiieeesss!
Oh Kate! Green eyed Kate who loves to be scared, but put a garbage bag or severed hand in front of her and she will do a full on Psycho horror scream! Also don’t EVER walk behind her in the woods or basically anywhere as she will freak out over every little sound she hears especially if the sound comes from the bushes! But please remember she is a budding horror writer so is never scared of anything! 🙂
She does talk to herself a lot and does get a teeny weeny bit obsessed with the old glove, but she was a reasonable Point Horror girl I would say!
I loved how when she suspects Denzil of all the goings on and accuses him many times she runs to him when shes scared! Yep that’s right Point Horror lady….run to the person you think is the killer and scaring you to death! Personally I think I would have run to Denzil too….I kinda loved him!
The Love Interest
Oh wow! Where to start! In the space of 200ish pages our Point Horror girl snogs all three love interests and basically all three males in the story giving a whole new meaning to the words Point Horror! From Gideon to Pearce, back to Gideon, a bit of a flirt with Pearce and then to Denzil! The hussy! A few times I thought I had picked up one of those Point Romances that were out the same time as the Point Horrors – does anyone else remember these? *fans self*
Okay so the main love interest is a violet eyed character called Gideon Drewe, missing William Drewe’s brother, who steps in to cover Williams lectures at the writers retreat and if I’m honest was a little creepy with obsession about fear! He was an okay love interest I guess….meh!
Before I start on the gang…I loved how we have classic Point Horror Style names in this book! Teachers Pet did not disappoint on this! Oh how I chuckled and chuckled! I think the names alone made this book for me!
So as above we have Gideon Drewe…love it!. Then we have Pearce Cronan…Love it more! Then a girl called Tawney…more about her below but YES! Then a black cat called Pet….Just !!!! But best of all, and I think this maybe my favourite EVER Point Horror name…..Denzil Doyle! I think I have died and gone to Point Horror character name heaven! 🙂
Chauffer / Caretaker / tall dark Zombie type Pearce Cronan with his midnight black eyes was very mysterious and sometimes I liked him sometimes I was like eh? I loved how he was the reveal dressing up and becoming Gideon and William’s sister Rowena showing he can be a serious writer too by rhyming every sentence but in a creepy way! I kept imagining Rowena breaking out in a bit of a Taylor Swift song “I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream”!
Cowboy wannabe Denzil Doyle with his super cool cowboy hat and owlish grey spectacled eyes who knows how to woo the ladies by pinching them! He did go a little to far though by trying to find the pocket watch in Kate’s clothes whilst she was wearing them! I think I may have been a bit jealous!
Tawney….oh bless her long frosted hair…she was so adorable, clumsy and funny and never got any jokes! Yes she made me laugh on numerous occasions from her poetry, her friendship with Denzil and best of all setting the kitchen on fire with her muffins and losing a contact lens in the ice cream! She was just so scatty that I loved her and her spirit so much and her poems! She made me laugh with her random screaming scaring everyone to death and it was just because she was scared!
Tawney reminded me of this character out of mean girls….
And of course we cannot move on without mentioning budding romance author and lover of all things poison ivy Miss Bunceton! She gets a bit of a bad time at the retreat and what seems to be over her weight. She seemed to be the teacher who was trying to be all hip and cool especially saying the old “what happens at camp stays at camp to Kate”….cringe 🙂
Also special nod to the camp cat, Pet! Clothes thief by day, with a passion for blood at night…well we were told she would eat anything and has no pride at all!
Fashion Faux Pas
I didn’t notice many – did you?
Maybe Gideon and his jeans and bulky knit sweater the exact colour of his violet eyes?!
Again not really disasters but more lines that made me chuckle a little….
“Oh, you young people and your obsession with horror!”
Miss Bunceton is looking at all of us #pointhorrorbookclub !
“You’ve been reading too many horror stories”
“Denzil Doyle. Seriously. Would I make up a name like that?”
I’m going all Billy here with his love of Point Horror girl Jenny, but I LOVE YOU DENZIL!
“Is a brick a brick?”
Denzil I have just confessed my love for you and you say something like that!
“I’ll be moseyin’ along. Sleep tight, don’t let the fleas bite, or whatever the hell these little critters are out here”
That’s my man!
“It’s my imagination. It’s a curse!”
This is Kate’s excuse for hearing everything in the bushes!
“Gideon Drewe. Don’t you just love his name!”
Nope Tawney! Chelley hearts Denzil! 4EVER!
“Kate was beginning to feel like one giant goosebump”
Don’t we all Kate! Don’t we all!
“Oh isn’t this just our luck!” “Some bear hauled off our clothes and ate them”
Nope Tawney…your clothes were fine…Poor Kate! The bear must have had a passion for watching people skinny dip!
Or maybe theres another explanation for the missing clothes like…
“Maybe Pet got hold of it! Maybe she hid the rest somewhere!”
*blank face* Pet is the cat!
“Hey look! Theres Igor!”
Classic line from Denzil! My love grows stronger!
“See you later pardner”
*swoons* And stronger!
“Her brain felt like wet sand”
We all have those days right?
“I’m plumb starved – I could eat a horse”
“Don’t go sidewinder on me. Back! Back!”
“Maybe he had to go to the bathroom” “That always makes me want to hurry”
“You’ll have – to – pull hard”
Okay….let’s not go there!”
“Oh I thought he was a recluse. Like a lot of writers are”
Ouch Cusick! Ouch!
“I’m sticking to you like needles on a cactus”
“I believe he refers to them as the Horror Groupies”
*group hug everyone*
Teachers Pet provides us with zero live action dead bodies in the book, but the prologue opens up with the hint that William has snuffed it and his body parts turning up all over the camp! Ewwwwwww
We also get a back story about the death of Gideon, William and Pearce’s parents and also another student ex lover of Gideon, Merriam’s death.
So lots of back story but unfortunately all of our characters in Teachers Pet lived!
Is it scary?
Not scary scary…..more point horror scary. The most scary scene for me was the whole ransacked cabin / lets kill something in Kate’s bath tub (although later on she has a shower in there….WHY?).
Did the best friend do it?
Huzzah! Nope the best friend of Kate was not the culprit, but the best friend of Gideon was the baddie! So yeah, in a kind of way it was the best friend! Classic point horror styley!
Some Mild Peril?
There’s a lot of running through the woods that goes on in this book, plus your usual shadowy unknown person wielding an axe and “ghostly apparitions” which would class as mild peril! Also Pearce and the whole setting a lethal hunting trap for Kate and then standing in it himself (no YOU laughed at this!) was genuine mild peril!
And not to mention someone running off with Kate and Tawney’s clothes whilst they were skinny dipping and slashing them to smithereens! A little disturbing!
Oh and killing something in Kate’s bathtub! Gross!
Is it any good?
Reading these books as a teen my favourite ones were always the Richie Tankersley Cusick books, but as we have found now we are a little older we have….lets say struggled with her Point Horror efforts. For me this was third time lucky and I am glad we gave her another chance. I actually liked this Point Horror. It had a very Friday the 13th / Psycho vibe and I actually did like the whole twist on the reveal and basically that Pearce was a little do lally tap with a split personality!
For me the book had a few makings of those classic style horrors including remote cabins, bonfire parties, skinny dipping, plenty of “I’ll be right backs”, people holding axes, comedy and scary moments.
Special shout out to the Horror Hunt! Let’s set one of these up! They sound awesome!
Why didn’t health and safety shut down the camp?! There were fires, deaths, missing people, contact lenses in food! Enough said!
Over to you!
As well as your thoughts on the book I’ve added some fun questions to ponder!
- Lets hear your best Rowena scary rhyme!
- Give me your best Point Horror charter name?
- Has any one ever been to a camp like this?
- Has this given us faith in RTC’s books again?
- What happened to Pet at the end of the book?
Just wanted to add this fab emoji tweet that #PointHorrorBookClub member Billy tweeted! It made me LOL so hard!
Feel free to pop me a comment using the reply button at the top of the page.
Want to explore previous #PointHorrorBookClub posts? I’ve got you! Head to the main page here
Thanks for joining in….Horror Groupies forever!