Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould

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Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould

Category: Confident Readers
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Magda Healey
Reviewed by Magda Healey
Summary: A great primer of ghost stories for older children and younger teens in a handsome edition, great illustrations and a good mix of new tales and retold classics. Ideal for a Halloween read or any fireside evening: and they'll be to scared to go upstairs alone.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 96 Date: October 2007
Publisher: Hodder Children's Books
ISBN: 978-0340893272

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Chris Mould is a popular writer of teen and children's spooky fiction and in this recently re-issued anthology of short stories called Dust and Bones he has created a perfect primer for the whole genre.

The book contains ten ghost short stories, a mixture of retold classics and Mould's own tales varying in length and in scariness. We have "The Bagman's Story" taken from the Pickwick Papers with its Dickensian cosy good-heartedness, a pirate-treasure thrill of "Aboard the Armadillo" and perhaps the most clasically ghostly story of walking effigies by Edith Nesbit "Man-Size in Marble" as well as "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" that has only a pretend ghost and Poe's chiling account of madness "The Tell-Tale Heart". The shortest and to me, undoubtedly the scariest is "The Bedtime Tale", barely two pages of sheer horror.

Altogether, it's a very good selection, and the generously laid-out hardback edition does justice to Mould's rich, confident, dynamic artwork that mixes cartoonish humour with a bit of spooky horror.

The age that Dust and Bones is suitable for depends entirely on your child's susceptibility to being scared by, well, scary stuff. Most 6-7 year olds would be able to understand most of the tales (apart from the Poe one, whose distinct whiff of insanity was more disturbing to this adult reader than the sulphur and mustiness of the others), but it would take a rather resilient or unimaginative 6 year old not to be disturbed. I would say, 8-10 years old onwards, and probably, on average, more for boys than girls. As the stories are short and illustrations plentiful, but the subject matter and style not particularly childish, it could be a great book for a reluctant reader.

Thanks to the publishers for sending this shiver down the Bookbag's spine.

Those ready for full-length ghost story might like Ghost Chamber while the Demonata series will satisfy the young fans of camp(ish) blood and gore.

Booklists.jpg Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould is in the Top Ten Books For Children Who Love To Be Scared Silly.
Booklists.jpg Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould is in the Top Ten Retellings of Myths, Legends and Fairy Tales.
Buy Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Dust 'n' Bones by Chris Mould at Amazon.com.


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