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The Beast of Baskerville: Deadtime Stories

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Overview

The Deadtime Stories by “Twisted Sisters” Annette and Gina Cascone—they’ll scare you silly.

Everyone in Baskerville knows about Jimmy Leeds. In fact, Adam Riley and his friends have been telling scary stories about Jimmy for years—stories they don’t really believe. After all, how can anyone believe in a half-human beast with horns and hooves?

But the legend of Jimmy Leeds isn’t just a story. When all the kids in the neighborhood decide to have ...

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Deadtime Stories: The Beast of Baskerville

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Overview

The Deadtime Stories by “Twisted Sisters” Annette and Gina Cascone—they’ll scare you silly.

Everyone in Baskerville knows about Jimmy Leeds. In fact, Adam Riley and his friends have been telling scary stories about Jimmy for years—stories they don’t really believe. After all, how can anyone believe in a half-human beast with horns and hooves?

But the legend of Jimmy Leeds isn’t just a story. When all the kids in the neighborhood decide to have a giant campout, Adam and his friends learn much too late that the streets of Baskerville aren’t safe—especially after dark. One by one, Adam’s friends start disappearing into the night. At first, Adam thinks it’s some kind of joke—until he follows the hoofprints into the nearby woods, and finds himself face-to-face with the Beast of Baskerville….

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Deadtime tales are magic for kids.”  —Huntsville, Alabama Times

Children's Literature - Naomi Milliner
As the story begins, sensible Adam and his best friend, fearful Eugene, are trying to bow out of a birthday party. The problem is, no one else is going either. The birthday boy, J.J., is not only "a sniveling, snorting, loogie-spitting beast," but he lives in a creepy house with an equally creepy mom. Legend—or rumor, as Adam prefers to believe—has it that 200 years ago Jimmy's mom (a witch) married a mortal and, as punishment, their son was turned into a beast, complete with twisted horns, hooves instead of toes, and matted black hair all over his body. Well, it turns out J.J.'s birthday party is the least of their problems. Adam and Eugene meet up with eleven friends (totaling—you guessed it!—thirteen) and, one by one, they disappear. Eventually all trails lead back to the Baskerville home where something very unexpected and downright beastly, occurs. One in a series of "Deadtime Stories," it's difficult to say who the target reader is. It's equally difficult to like, care about, or root for any of the characters. Their favorite words are: stupid, idiot, moron and jerk. There are so many false alarms (deer, possum, lizard) that the reader stops taking any of it seriously; therefore, the reader is caught unaware and feels cheated when there actually is a beast after all. It's like "The Boy Who Cried Wolf," only without a moral or message. All in all, a beastly read. Reviewer: Naomi Milliner
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765330673
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Publication date: 5/8/2012
  • Series: Deadtime Stories Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 532,064
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 550L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.86 (w) x 8.32 (h) x 0.74 (d)

Meet the Author

“Twisted Sisters” Annette and Gina Cascone have written more than twenty-eight books and two movies together. Their books include the Deadtime Stories series for middle grade readers as well as young adult thrillers. They have also produced and written numerous treatments and books for series packagers such as Parachute Publishing, where they worked on the mega-successful Goosebumps series by R. L. Stine. They both live in Central New Jersey.

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Read an Excerpt

The Beast of Baskerville

Deadtime Stories
By Annette Cascone

Starscape

Copyright © 2012 Annette Cascone
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780765330673

1
 

Adam Riley started to sweat as he and his best friend, Eugene Nazzaro, slowly approached the long gravel drive that snaked its way up to the creepy old house on the hill. It was the Leeds house, where the Beast of Baskerville had been born, the house where the sniveling, snorting, subhuman creature lived now.
From the street, Adam could see all the warning signs telling him to turn tail and run. They were nailed to the rotted-out trees that lined the drive:
KEEP OUT! PRIVATE PROPERTY!
NO TRESPASSING ALLOWED!
ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK!
BEWARE! THE BEAST OF BASKERVILLE IS WATCHING YOU!
Adam swallowed hard. The last thing in the world he wanted to do was climb Deadman’s Hill.
But the creature was expecting him.
Here goes nothing, Adam thought, taking a deep breath to steady his nerves. He lifted his foot and crossed over the imaginary safety line between Ridge Road and the Leedses’ driveway.
Behind him, Eugene stopped dead in his tracks.
“This is not a good idea,” Eugene told Adam for the twelve millionth time. “You’re only asking for trouble.”
“But if I don’t deal with this now, I’m dead tonight!” Adam exclaimed.
“And what are you going to do when the little beast throws a big fat tizzy fit?” Eugene asked. “That’s what will happen, you know—the minute you tell him you’re not coming to his stupid birthday party tonight.”
Adam knew Eugene was right.
J.J. Leeds, the thirteen-year-old, sniveling, snorting, subhuman creature that had moved into the Beast of Baskerville’s old house, was definitely going to throw a major tizzy fit. Especially when he found out that no one in the neighborhood was planning to come to his party.
“You’re not going to tell J.J. about anyone else, are you?” Eugene wanted to know.
“Are you nuts?” Adam shot back. “Then I’ll really be dead. Because everyone in the neighborhood will kill me!”
Adam didn’t even want to tell J.J. that he wasn’t coming to the party, but thanks to his mom, he didn’t have a choice.
Mrs. Riley felt sorry for J.J. Leeds. She insisted that the only reason all the neighborhood kids picked on him was because his last name was Leeds, just like the Beast’s.
Adam had tried to explain to his mother that the problem with J.J. wasn’t his name at all. Lots of people in Baskerville were named Leeds, including Stacey Leeds, one of Adam’s good friends. The Leeds family had founded the town of Baskerville more than two hundred years ago, and dozens of Leedses were still scattered about.
It wasn’t even the fact that J.J. and his mom had moved into the creepiest house in town that made him a spitball target. If J.J. had been a normal kid, everyone in the neighborhood, except for Eugene, probably would have thought that was cool.
But J.J. wasn’t a normal kid. He was a sniveling, snorting, loogie-spitting little beast. And everyone in the neighborhood knew it. Everyone but Mrs. Riley.
“I can’t believe your mom is making you do this,” Eugene said.
“Me neither,” Adam groaned. “But if I don’t tell J.J. face-to-face that I’m not coming to his party later, my mom won’t let me sleep out tonight. And if I don’t give him this stupid present, she’ll make me go to his party.”
“So why don’t you just leave the present in the mailbox and tell your mom he wasn’t home?” Eugene suggested.
Adam considered that idea for a second. But he knew it wouldn’t work. “I can’t,” he told Eugene. “My mom might call Mrs. Leeds. Then I’ll really be in trouble.”
J.J.’s mom was always at home. She didn’t own a car, and she rarely went out.
J.J. claimed that Mrs. Leeds had to stay inside because she was allergic to the air on the outside.
No one believed it. Mrs. Leeds was just creepy, and she was another reason no one wanted to go to J.J.’s party.
“So what do you want to do?” Eugene asked, cringing. “Talk to Mrs. Leeds?”
Adam shot him a look. “No, I don’t want to talk to Mrs. Leeds! But if my mom does, she’ll know I didn’t even ring the doorbell.”
None of the kids in the neighborhood had ever even seen Mrs. Leeds since she and J.J. moved in, except through the windows of her house. She was usually up in the “Beast Tower,” sitting in front of the stained-glass window, rocking back and forth in her chair, watching to make sure no one stepped foot on her property.
It was Mrs. Leeds who’d put up all the warning signs to keep the neighborhood kids out.
“Oh, man,” Eugene sighed. “This is a nightmare.”
“Tell me about it,” Adam agreed.
“Why’s your mother being such a bedbug about this anyway?” Eugene wondered.
“Because she feels bad that J.J. doesn’t have any friends in the neighborhood,” Adam explained. “And she doesn’t want me to be mean.”
“Yeah, well, J.J. doesn’t have any friends outside the neighborhood, either,” Eugene pointed out.
“I know,” Adam said. “But my mom thinks that’s because Mrs. Leeds didn’t send him to school, not because he’s a booger ball.”
“Mrs. Leeds didn’t have to send him to school, remember?” Eugene mocked. “J.J.’s a genius.”
“Yeah, right.” Adam smirked. “J.J.’s a real genius. He doesn’t even know his first name.”
He didn’t, either. J.J. insisted that the Js were his name, not just initials.
“No way that kid has a three thousand I.Q.,” Eugene said, shaking his head.
“No kidding,” Adam said. “I.Q.s don’t even go up that high, you moron. He made that up.”
But J.J. had sworn it was true. He claimed he was so smart, he didn’t have to go to school.
“Let’s just get this over with,” Adam said impatiently, taking a step up the drive.
“Sorry, pal.” Eugene’s feet were still planted on the safe side of the imaginary line. “From here on in, you’re on your own. No way I’m climbing Deadman’s Hill.”
“It’s just a driveway,” Adam huffed.
“Oh, yeah?” Eugene shot back. “Tell that to the Beast of Baskerville’s victims.”
“That’s just a stupid legend,” Adam told him.
“Then how come everyone knows this is the Beast’s house?” Eugene demanded.
Was his house,” Adam corrected, “more than two hundred years ago. And no one knows that for sure.”
Everyone knows that for sure,” Eugene protested. “And everyone knows this is the hill he dragged all his victims up—right before he tore them to shreds and buried them in his well.”
“What well?” Adam asked. “Do you see a well on this property?”
“Nooooo,” Eugene replied. “But that doesn’t mean it’s not here.”
Adam stared at Eugene. Apparently, J.J. wasn’t the only genius in the neighborhood. “If you can’t see the well, then how can it be here?”
“Maybe it’s hidden,” Eugene suggested.
Adam rolled his eyes. “How the heck do you hide a three-thousand-pound tunnel made out of stone?”
“Who knows,” Eugene answered. “When witches are involved, anything is possible.”
“What witches?” Adam asked, exasperated.
“The witches that cursed Elvira,” Eugene told him. “The ones that turned Jimmy Leeds into the Beast before he was born.”
Elvira Leeds was supposedly the Beast of Baskerville’s mother. She was also a witch. According to legend, Elvira Leeds married a mortal back in the 1700s when the town of Baskerville was first founded. And because she broke the rules of her coven, which stated that witches could marry only warlocks, the other witches cursed her. They turned her husband into a three-headed newt with one eye. Then they put a spell on her unborn child.
When Elvira Leeds finally gave birth to her son, Jimmy, he was only half human. His arms and legs were normal, but the rest of him was beastly.
Two twisted horns shot out of his skull, while two goatlike hooves grew in place of ten human toes. His eyes burned red like flames. And every inch of his body was covered with matted black hair.
Jimmy Leeds was supposedly so hideous that his witchy mother tossed him down the well on her property, hoping to be rid of him.
But Jimmy Leeds didn’t die. Instead, he grew into the Beast. Rumor had it that every so often, Jimmy Leeds had climbed out of the well to feed on innocent children.
Some people, like Eugene, believed he still did.
“You know what?” Adam sighed in frustration. “You’re a yo-yo. There is no well. And there’s no Beast of Baskerville, either. Now are you coming with me or what? Because if you don’t come with me, I’ll tell J.J. about tent night tonight,” he threatened.
“You wouldn’t dare!” Eugene turned pale.
“Would too,” Adam lied. “And I’ll tell everyone that you’re the one who told him.”
“Tent night” was another reason no one wanted to go to J.J.’s party. All the kids in the neighborhood had been planning to sleep out for weeks. They were all setting up tents in their backyards. Then, when the parents were in bed for the night, the kids were going to sneak out of their yards to play kick the can and hang out.
Needless to say, J.J. wasn’t invited.
“I mean it,” Adam bluffed. “And I’ll tell J.J. you want him to sleep in our tent.”
Eugene gave in. “I’ll go with you, okay?” he agreed in a panic. “But if something bad happens to us on this hill, I’m blaming you.”
“Nothing bad is going to happen to us,” Adam assured him.
But Adam was wrong.
Something bad was going to happen to them—but not on the hill.

 
Copyright © 2012 by Annette Cascone and Gina Cascone


Continues...

Excerpted from The Beast of Baskerville by Annette Cascone Copyright © 2012 by Annette Cascone. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2012

    Extraordinary

    I loved it!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2014

    Scary but exiting

    Never judge a book by its cover sure it looks kray-kray but it is amazing-gazing*





    *super awsome

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2014

    Its awsome

    I watched everyone of the shows even the spider one.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2013

    Hello contest tap here!

    Im going to make a contest! On the review page of "Grandpaws monster movies" post your fav deadtime stories tittle. It came be from the TV show or book. Votes due on
    X-mas. Good luck!

    ~ Digital Cupcake

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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