Produced by Garrett Beltis with assistance from Sam Lusted and Jake Blair.
Kirkus has compiled its reviews of many of my books here, topped by the recent star for Wicked Cruel.
Random House has prepared this book talk for teachers and librarians. Thanks to Susan Geye for the great work!
The three stories in this book are sure to curl your hair and send shivers up your spine. Maybe Lorne did die as a result of bullies beating him up repeatedly, and maybe he is returning to even the score. The evidence that Lorne has returned from the dead sure seems to be valid. The wild horses of Brickyard Pond who died a cruel death do return and come to the aide of Danny and Claudine. Other people have also seen and heard these dead horses – urban legend or truth? In “Rites of Passage” Owen and Mason attend a dance at the Chase Tavern and Owen dances with Charity, a girl who died over a hundred years ago. When Owen returns to the Chase Tavern with his friend Sophie, they see two ghosts and feel the cold breeze of a third. Are the rumors of Chase Tavern being haunted true?
Prepared by Susan Geye, Director of Library Services, Everman ISD
“Well-crafted eerie tales of the bonds between the dead and the living.”
The first review for WICKED CRUEL is in, and it’s a good one. Kirkus gives it a rare star and says the book is “wicked good.”
Here’s the entire review:
[starred review] WICKED CRUEL
Author: Rich Wallace
Price ( Hardcover ): $16.99
Price ( Library Ed ): $19.99
Price ( e-book ): $10.99
Publication Date: August 6, 2013
ISBN ( Hardcover ): 978-0-375-86748-4
ISBN ( Library Ed ): 978-0-375-96748-1
ISBN ( e-book ): 978-0-375-89800-6
Welcome to Cheshire Notch, New Hampshire, “a town where kids grow up aware of the many spirits in their midst.”
“It’s no rumor. I heard it from… Well, I don’t remember where I heard it. But from somebody reliable.” That’s how urban legends work, whether it’s the story of the finger in a Big Mac, a fried rat in a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken, or the drowned kid whose body thrashing in the pond can still be heard on dark, quiet nights. Nobody ever seems to have actually witnessed the event, but hears it related by “my friend’s barber’s cousin in Chicago.” Three ghostly stories explore urban legends—actually rural New England legends—and how they changed lives. A bullied boy moves away and dies from a brain injury, yet is seen in a music video after he had died. A team of horses drowns in a flooded brickyard, but on certain rainy nights they run free. Five farm children die young, but one mysteriously communicates with a young boy who may be as afraid of girls as ghosts. Ghosts may not have substance, but these tales do, with their themes of bullying, loneliness, guilt, atonement, life and death.
Well-crafted eerie tales of the bonds between the dead and the living. Wicked good. (Fiction. 10 & up)
When she isn’t reading books, our Lucy likes to look out the big windows that overlook the yard. She’s always on guard for squirrels and other intruders, and lets them know they are only welcome in the trees, not the grass.
That’s how I got my idea for the May 2013 episode of The Timbertoes, where a pack of squirrels play a daring game with Spot. Ron Zalme always does a great job with the artwork.
Lucy turned 12 on April Fools Day, but she still has puppy energy and curiosity. She’s my pal and we love her.
It won’t be out until August, but here’s the cover of my next book—a trilogy of scary stories set in a New Hampshire college town. I call the city Cheshire Notch, but I based all of the settings on Keene. So I got to draw on the world’s most successful Pumpkin Festival, the very cool 1760s tavern that’s a hundred yards from our house, and all the quirkiness and spookiness of the downtown/college atmosphere. All through the lens of some 12-year-old boys. We’ll have a video out soon.
So we’re watching The Simpsons a couple of nights ago and Homer asks for a subscription to Highlights. Glad to see two icons linked like that. Maybe Highlights can return the favor and Goofus can watch the show. Listen to it here: simpsons_highlights