Book Review: The Dead Boyfriend by R.L. Stine

by - 2:42:00 AM

Title: The Dead Boyfriend
Author: R.L. Stine
Pages: 176
Genre: YA Horror/Mystery
Release Date: 27 September 2016

From Goodreads: "Caitlyn has never had a real boyfriend before. When she starts seeing Blade, she throws herself into the relationship with fervor. She ignores her friends who warn her that Blade may be a phony and that she is taking the whole thing too seriously. Caitlyn is smitten. She doesn't care if she loses her friends. All she wants is Blade. When Caitlyn approaches Blade with another girl, she completely loses it. She snaps. Everything goes red. When she comes back to her senses, she realizes that Blade is dead - and she has killed him. 

But if Blade is dead, how is he staring at her across a crowded party?"

Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for review!

Note: The Goodreads description for this title had the wrong spelling of Caitlyn and the name of the male character, Blade, read as Colin. I have corrected these things in my description in order to not cause any confusion for any readers!

When I was younger, R.L. Stine filled my shelves with his amazing Goosebumps, Fear Street, Give Yourself Goosebumps, Point Horror, and so many more series and spin offs. He was my first introduction into horror and I can honestly say that without this man and his super creepy books, I would probably not be a horror genre lover like I am today. I believe I still have all of the original paperback Goosebumps books in a box because I just could not let go of that part of my childhood. When I discovered last year (because I've apparently been hiding under a rock when it comes to YA horror) that R.L. Stine was revamping his Fear Street series, I was more excited than a kid trick-or-treating on Halloween! It's such a treat to be able to dive back into this world and it really feels like I never left.

The Dead Boyfriend follows Caitlyn, a girl who is finally getting to experience her first real relationship with a mysterious new boy named Blade. Their relationship is fast and crazy, and Caitlyn believes she is in love with him. When he blows her off without an explanation, Caitlyn discovers that he's seeing another girl and loses it. After she regains her senses, she realizes that she has killed Blade. But if Blade is dead, then how is Caitlyn suddenly seeing him everywhere?

While this was a fairly short book at 176 pages, I really enjoyed it and found myself remembering my time as a child reading the Goosebumps and Fear Street books. The writing felt like it was aimed at the lower age bracket of YA but I still got some really creepy vibes while reading! I suppose as a 23 year old reader, I'm more analytical of everything I read now versus when I was much younger, but this was still a great read for me. Since Summer is ending and Fall is just around the corner, I find myself gravitating more towards the horror genre, and this was a perfect start to my Fall reading season!

Something that I really enjoyed about this book was the little nod to another Fear Street novel that was woven into the story. I actually read and reviewed The Lost Girl last year and I really enjoyed that title as well, so when I was reading The Dead Boyfriend and recognized not only two characters but a whole scene from The Lost Girl made me so happy! I hope that the other Fear Street revamp books have characters show up from each book and connect the world just a little bit more.

The writing certainly felt aimed at a younger reading audience, but I still found myself getting chills when I read some of the more fast-paced, scary parts! There was just enough description to easily follow the story and know what was happening, but I do wish there was just a bit more to it. Does that make any sense? I really liked all of the characters, especially Deena Fear who was a double dose of weird and creepy and made the story so much better. Caitlyn was also really great to follow, and I especially loved when she started to lose it and go crazy! Each of the characters, even the minor ones, really added to the story and brought me in deeper to Caitlyn's world. Dead or alive, they were all unique and brought the story together for me.

Anyone looking to either get back into the Fear Street series or for a good book to kick off the Fall season should look no further than The Dead Boyfriend. It's a wonderfully creepy story that is sure to bring on the spooky Halloween feelings that are perfect for this time of year. With a twist at the end that is sure to leave you screaming, The Dead Boyfriend is an instant hit for fans of all things horror and R.L. Stine. Be sure to pick it up on 27 September 2016 and beware, because you're in for a scare.

Wait a second...guess I've still got Goosebumps on the brain!

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