PHBC – Halloween Night II by R L Stine


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Do you remember the Point Horror Book Series from the 90’s?  The Point Horror Series was a series of young adult point horror books and was launched in 1991 by Scholastic always with the Point Horror banner on the spine and on the top of every point horror book.  There were a number of authors that wrote these books for Scholastic: R L Stine, Diane Hoh, Caroline B Cooney, Sinclair Smith to name but a few.

Are the Point Horror books we loved as a teenager still our favourites on the re-read?  Are you new to Point Horror?  Has our opinion changed?  Are they still as good?  Do they stand up to modern day YA Horror?  Or are they a whole load of cray cray?

Lets find out…

#pointhorrorbookclub

Join in the discussion with this Halloween Special!

Halloween Night II by R L Stine

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Check out our thoughts on the first Halloween Night here

Don’t forget to use the #pointhorrorbookclub on twitter so I can see your thoughts or tweet me using @chelleytoy

Don’t forget next months #PointHorrorBookClub for the 13th November…..

417r2r5z4dl-_sx285_bo1204203200_For links to #pointhorrorbookclub posts old and new, Point Horror guest posts and interviews with Point Horror authors please click here


** Please note that as this is a discussion there will be spoilers**


The Tagline

Tricks, treats and…death

Okay ….so…What’s It All About?

One year after Halloween Night we return to the old gang of Fairview….on Halloween!

Oh No!  Not Halloween again!

Yep!  Clues in the title!  You remember how much Brenda loves Halloween….especially since her best friend and cousin plotted and tried to kill her previously…on Halloween.

You would think she’d be over hating Halloween by now!

*rolls eyes*

How can anyone hate Halloween?!

Well Brenda does, but she likes making films…..not those kind of films…scary films….with her friends Traci and Angela called Night of the Jack O’ Lantern….because you know Brenda has no reason to ever fear pumpkins!

She also has new boyfriend Jake who she loves with all of heart!

Awwwwww how sweet!

No he’s really not….trust me!

And once Brenda gets cheated on and dumped that’s when the creepy cards, rotten pumpkins and pumpkin pillow worms start….., but who could be responsible for ruining another Halloween for Brenda!

And how about a good Halloween trick to scare a victim to death……

*evil laugh*

The Girl

Copper haired Brenda Morgan is BACK!  Back with her downgraded green eyes (they were emerald previously), fair skin and freckles that darken when she gets angry!

Like before I had a very love/hate relationship with Brenda…although I did find her slightly more irritating this time around.  I mean her love for jack ass Jake was just plain annoying….she kind of deserved the Happy Last Halloween card that creeped her out so much!

I loved the fact that her pure hatred of her cousin Halley was still alive and kicking and Brenda’s little blue car was still rattling along.

And her freak out over the “fat man” who simply just wanted to return her lost wallet was hilarious.

It seemed that catching Jake and Halley together and snogging each others faces at the mall over a yellow table really pushed Brenda over the edge.  Poor Brenda really does not have good luck with boys….last time it was slime ball Ted and now jerk Jake!

I also loved how much Brenda hates Halloween for obvious reasons, but yet she was quite happy to go along with a revenge prank oh you know like the one that was played on her a year before!

Will she every learn!

The Love Interest

Jack Ass Jake….oh this boy made my blood boil.  He was a jerk from start to finish.  He loved his own reflection, was constantly late for everything, didn’t date girls for very long and basically loved himself too much for my liking.

Come to think of it he actually reminds me of one of my exes!

Ugh!

He was Brenda’s boyfriend who basically ran off with her cousin and then goes back to Brenda thinking she must be lucky he gave her a second chance!

Just no!

I was so so happy when the girls all started to plot to scare him to death and record it on camera…..it was an extra bonus to me that he actually got killed off!

I’ve never been so happy to lose a Point Horror boy before!

Best part of the whole book and if a coffin too!

No YOUR laughing!

The Gang

Lets start with newbie Angela Bowen.  The curly brown haired, dark brown eyed, chubby girl!  Yes you heard me right…..Stiney actually put a chubby girl in a Point Horror…..so of course she turned out to be the reveal/killer/weirdo.  And of course she had to have the most ridiculous Point Horror capture ever…..befouled by a pumpkin!  Right on the head!  And burnt by the candle inside!  Ouch!

But lets not forget she was fun to be with, had a good sense of humour and was a good understanding listener who liked orange nail polish and lived in a scary house that was like something out of a horror film.  She was pretty awesome right?!

I actually did like Angela…and although I guessed she would be the reveal I think we can all thank her for killing off the worst Point Horror boy EVER which I have to admit was a nice twist that made me cheer with joy!

Oh and silly me….she had a love for skeletons!

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Then we have best friend Traci (with an I) Warner back again with her long black hair and dark eyes (again upgraded from silvery last time) and this time around expert filmmaker.  She blended into the background of any fake scenario for the gangs film project for school which mainly just entailed cat fights over boys to be honest.  Again she kind of just went along with things like before, but I seemed to like her a bot more this time around.

Brenda’s cousin Halley was back again, but this time as a fully fledged Morgan.  Not content with going out with Brenda’s old boyfriend Ted (remember him?) with her sexy looking ways, blonde hair and sweet and spicy perfume she manages to steal Brenda’s boyfriend right in front of her face! I think this was payback as Brenda moaned on about Halley going out with her ex Ted so much even though jerk Jake was Traci’s ex!  All a bit Made In Chelsea if you ask me!

And then there was the return of Dina…..you know the one that tried to stab Brenda in the first book who conveniently doesn’t remember a thing about what happened last Halloween (you can recap here Dina).  Do you think this had anything to do with her tripping over that pumpkin last time?  In custody of her parents after being released from hospital and seeing a shrink she was still the tall, slender, pretty but pale dark eyed girl but this time with hair past her shoulders it’s just a shame that we didn’t get a whole chapter from her point of view again!

It was also great to see Brenda’s little brother make an appearance again although a slightly toned down version from the first book….but I still loved him anyway!

Fashion Faux Pas

Did anyone spot any?

I did spot Angela wearing a canary yellow t shirt and dark green denim jeans with dangling plastic earrings which made me think of Pat Butcher!

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Dialogue Disasters

Not many this time around but these ones made me chuckle…..

“She was definitely on the chubby side and always had to worry about her weight”

That’s no excuse for making Angela the reveal Stiney!

“They had this horrible court fight over who got Halley and the judge decided they were both unfit parents”

Say what now?

“You can’t break cd’s….their indestructible!”

Oh the 90’s!  Bonus points for upgrading from tape cassettes though.

“Tomorrow will be better Bren.  You’ll see”

“Yeah.  Better. Brenda echoed.  Much Better”

“But it wasn’t”

“The next morning, the vest she wanted to wear over her white t shirt had a stain on the front.  She had to change her whole outfit!  Then she couldn’t find her hairbrush!”

*screams*  OH THE HORROR!

And not to forget the best line of this whole book…..

“I just remembered my parents have a really large bull whip in the closet”

All I’m saying is if Angela’s parents didn’t exist I think we all know who the bull whip really belonged to don’t we Angela!

Body Count

1

And I think we were all thankful to Angela for that one!

Lets hope the footage gets leaked!

Is it scary?

Hmmmmm not really….more classic Point Horror through and through.

Although I think the biggest horror of them all was when Brenda lost her wallet AND DIDN’T GET TO BUY HER SWEATER!

Did the best friend do it?

DING DING!

We have another winner!

Okay so not the best, best friend, but the newbie best friend….it totally counts though!

I mean Brenda doesn’t have much luck with best friends does she?!

Some Mild Peril?

One word….pumpkins!

Yep I went there!

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Oh also the fact that Brenda’s parents do not show up in any way shape or form before page 67!  I class that as mild peril considering everything that was going on under their roof when they were meant to be responsible for two teenagers!

Oh how I love a good set of Point Horror parents!

Is it any good?

I enjoyed it, but it felt a little slow.  I enjoyed the Halloween feel to it and the haunted houses, pumpkins and tricks and I must admit that pumpkin ending gave me a good old chuckle and the sense of now I know what they covers all about!

Final Thought

*ponders if this book was sponsored by Coke as it appeared EVERYWHERE*

Cover Wars!

Which one do you prefer?

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Over to you!

As well as your thoughts on the book I’ve added some fun questions to ponder!

  • Did anyone miss Jake after his timely death?
  • Where were Brenda’s parents?
  • Was Dina totally under used?
  • Did the girls ever finish their horror film project – Night Of The Jack O Lantern?
  • If you were filming a typical Point Horror scene for your project what would you film?
  • What happened to the fat old man?

You can leave a reply by using the reply button at the top of the page!

See you at #pointhorrorbookclub on the 13th November to discuss Prom Date !

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For links to #pointhorrorbookclub posts old and new, Point Horror guest posts and interviews with Point Horror authors please click here

Thanks for joining in….

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I am often known to be a bit clumsy and a little loopy! Book loving (obsessed), theatre loving, slasher film loving csi geek!
Winner of UKYABA Champion Newcomer 2015 and nominated for Champion of Social Media 2016 and Blogger Of The Year 2016!

© 2014 - 2017 Michelle Toy All Rights Reserved

9 thoughts on “PHBC – Halloween Night II by R L Stine

  1. cmilton81@gmail.com'Cazzy

    Hi PHBC!

    I thought this one was OK. The thing about Stiney is, he’s readable and entertaining, even when what he’s written is essentially a load of old tosh. Of all the books he’s written, I haven’t the faintest idea why Halloween Night was deemed worthy of a sequel.  I mean, the original was OK, but for me, there was nothing standout about it that screamed ‘this needs a sequel’ and the characters weren’t really interesting enough to have me wondering whatever happened to Brenda, or Dina or Traci (with an i).

    Still, I did find the book an entertaining read for an afternoon.  The scene at the mall was particularly funny (and all the hysteria over the persistent fat man that followed). You lose your wallet and 10 minutes later there’s someone desperately trying to flag you down- what the hell could they want? 🤔I don’t think a career as a detective is in Brenda’s stars. I suppose you could argue she was jumpy, given the time of year and the history, but considering in a previous scene she had been pretending to wrestle with a knife weilding nutter, that doesn’t really wash.

    Anglea – what can I say? What a loon. All the stuff in her house (including her ‘parents’) made me giggle, especially after the seemingly typical PH characterisation of a chubby girl – all mismatched clothing and timidity. I loved Traci’s half arsed attempt to reassure her: ‘your hair is fine.’ Fine? Nice. What are friends for eh?

    As for the others: Traci – yawn, Halley- wash, rinse, repeat and Dina – what was the point really? I actually thought after Angela’s hostile response they might have known each other from the institution, but sadly not.

    Yet again, at the heart of the mayhem was a sleazy guy. I actually think Jake might just win the accolade of sleazist PH boy.

    All in all readable and entertaining but forgetable.

    Did anyone miss Jake after his timely death?
    Only Chlamydia, who’d set it’s sights on him.

    Where were Brenda’s parents?
    They were out pulling halloween pranks on their neighbours.

    Was Dina totally under used?
    She was redundant in this story, really.

    Did the girls ever finish their horror film project – Night Of The Jack O Lantern?
    Yes! Angela’s parents both had starring roles and we’re a great success.

    If you were filming a typical Point Horror scene for your project what would you film?
    It would have to be the end of Trick or Treat.

    What happened to the fat old man?
    He made a modest living out of picking people’s pockets then returning their wallets to them and getting a few dollars here and there for his trouble, using his hard luck story.

    Reply
  2. taramatthews1981@gmail.com'Tara

    To be honest I didn’t enjoy this one. After reading Fatal Secrets there is certainly a difference in the quality of writing when you compare this book to that.
    In saying that, I do enjoy the craziness that these books are .

    Reply
  3. paulhirons81@gmail.com'@PaulHi

    Hey gang!

    Totally agree with Cazzy on this one – quite why Halloween Night warranted a sequel I’ll never know, and sadly this was a bit of a weaker retread of stuff we’d already seen the first time around. Also, Brenda, whose feisty stroppiness I quite enjoyed in the first book, irritated the living crap out of me in this one. Sure, Halley was a boyfriend-stealing, needy old skank, but I’d have been doing more than putting worms in Brenda’s pillowcase if I had to deal with her tantrums and dramas IRL.

    Stine’s issue with overweight people continues to bug me. Poor old Angela, apart from being a disappointingly obvious whodunnit, was characterised entirely by her weight, as was the good samaritan wallet returner (and, by the way, ten lousy friggin’ dollars after pursuing Brenda all goddamn week to return her wallet? Screw you, Brenda’s tightwad dad). You know, there are other ways of describing people, Stine.

    Question time!

    Cover wars: Hmm, both a bit weak this month. I’ll go with the skeleton costumes, although what actually was the point of them all dressing the same in the end? Did I miss something, or was this just lazy plotting?

    Did anyone miss Jake after his timely death? Absolutely not, though I enjoyed the fact that our only love interest was an irredeemable jerk this time. AND that he got actually murdered as hell. Bonus points!

    Where were Brenda’s parents? They gave up after last time and decided to leave Brenda and Halley to it. Saved themselves. Don’t blame them, to be fair.

    Was Dina totally under used? Totally. I loved Dina last time – she was a genuinely sympathetic villain. This time she just existed for Brenda to be mean to, although what was going on at that school to allow the perpetrator of an actual attempted murder back on the attendance register boggles my mind.

    Did the girls ever finish their horror film project – Night Of The Jack O Lantern? God, I hope not. That movie seemed to consist of a series of people being pranked, and zero plot. Essentially a Halloween-themed Beadle’s About (showing my age…).

    If you were filming a typical Point Horror scene for your project what would you film? Piranha Pond Massacre from The Hitchhiker OF COURSE.

    What happened to the fat old man? He teamed up with Dina and Angela, and ran Brenda’s whole annoying family out of town.

    Looking forward to Prom Date, you guys – it looks to be a bit of a doorstop compared to usual Point Horrors. Will extra pages mean extra fun??

    Reply
  4. paul.phillips@cpfs.wa.gov.au'Paul P

    I just realised it’s possible R.L. Stine may have had no say in what justified a sequel or not. Maybe Point Horror wanted “Halloween Night II” to exist, not poor Stiney. So he just remade the original! It was all very rinse-and-repeat, as others have said. It kind of negated the point of the first one even existing, with Dana back on the streets and Halley reverting to the same behaviour as in part 1.

    However, Stine doesn’t pull any stupid supernatural plot twists. If you’ve read his diabolically bad Fear Street reboot, you’ll know what I’m talking about. That’s enough for me to give this a passing grade, and there were some neato surprises in the climax! It’s Point Horror fast-food; I enjoyed it while it lasted, slightly regretted it afterwards, and hours later I wanted some more.

    Did anyone miss Jake after his timely death? Ethan, from Call Waiting.

    Where were Brenda’s parents? They were visiting friends on Fear Street, hoping to appear in a more lucrative franchise.

    Was Dina totally underused? My word she was. She was a walking red herring.

    Did the girls ever finish their horror film project? No. They realised fame was much more instant by vlogging on YouTube.

    Typical Point Horror scene for my own film project? Duffy trapped in her runaway wheelchair in The Fever.

    What happened to the fat old man? He stays in a musty old closet for any time Stine requires him for a cliffhanger chapter ending. This is about the millionth time Stine has used the “I-think-I’m-being-followed-but-it’s-actually-somebody-returning-something-to-me” trope. Enough already!

    Prom Date is one of my personal favourites. Even after over 20 YA thrillers, Diane Hoh could still knock it out of the park.

    Reply
  5. cvemorgan@hotmail.com'Caroline

    I hated this one. I speed read the first before I started the second and guys… it is exactly. the. same. novel.

    Did anyone miss Jake after his timely death?

    Ted? Noah?

    Where were Brenda’s parents?

    Probably stuck in the pages of book one re-wallpapering Brenda’s bedroom.

    Was Dina totally under used?

    She wasn’t fat enough for Stine to consider her a real threat.

    Did the girls ever finish their horror film project – Night Of The Jack O Lantern?

    Yeah, but it’s a bit like Apocalypse Now. Beautiful photography but makes absolutely no sense.

    If you were filming a typical Point Horror scene for your project what would you film?

    R L Stine wandering to the bank with bagfuls of cash.

    What happened to the fat old man?

    He went back to the mall without a reward.

    Reply

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