Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

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Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

collected by Alvin Schwartz, illustrated by Brett Helquist

Ages 8-11, 96 pages

Yesterday’s post had a scary book banned within an Arthur book. Today, I’m highlighting an actual scary book that was banned. This is a collection of very short stories. I thought it was scary and fun, because the stories tell you how you should read them such as jump, scream, or talk quietly. These stories are a collection of folklore and scary tales told from around the world. There’s also More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and Scary Stories 3.

“What do you come for?” she asked in a small voice that shivered and shook.

“What do I come for?” he said. “I come – for YOU!”

(As you shout the last words, stamp your foot and jump at someone nearby.)

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, page 13

A boy was digging at the edge of the garden when he saw a big toe. He tried to pick it up, but it was stuck to something. So he gave it a good hard jerk, and it came off his hand. Then he heard something groan and scamper away.

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, page 7

Reasons for being challenged:

The American Library Association listed Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark as the number one challenged book during the 1990s. Most of the reasons were that children would experience a lack of appetite, nightmares, sickness, and unhealthy questions about death. Another challenge stated that the book encouraged violence and cruelty. Many individuals concluded that children could separate reality from folklore and these books are mild compared to television.

Reference: Banned in the U.S.A.:Reference Guide to Censorship in Schools and Public Libraries (page 159 – 161)

4 thoughts on “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

    tcnorwood said:
    September 26, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    I remember this book from my childhood. Hard to believe that so many children’s books get challenged. Great blog! I really like the border along the sides, it is a nice touch.

      Caroline responded:
      September 26, 2011 at 6:36 pm

      It’s crazy what books people think are worth to ban or challenge. I just started playing with my blog. Thanks for the comment.

    joelhuntergun said:
    October 15, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Thanks for this post. The “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” books were my favorites as a kid, so I was please to learn this new information. -Really cool.

      Caroline responded:
      October 15, 2011 at 10:21 pm

      I wanted to highlight different books that were banned or challenged for Banned Books Week. Some of the reasons are so crazy for wanting to ban a book. Um, “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” should be a tad scary, since well they are scary stories. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

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