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Literature / Still More Tales to Give You Goosebumps

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Still More Tales to Give You Goosebumps is the fourth short-story collection from the Tales to Give You Goosebumps series, containing ten stories with a Halloween theme and originally released with a set of Halloween-themed Goosebumps accessories, including vampire fangs, fake vampire blood, fake skin, and makeup.

It contains the following stories:

  • "Pumpkin Juice" - Two boys discover a recipe for a drunk that turns them into hungry beasts.
  • "Attack of the Tattoo" - Jeannie finds a stick-on tattoo in her Halloween bag, but after she applies it, it turns out to be alive.
  • "The Wish" - A boy named Max receives the power to make a single wish, which backfires horribly.
  • "An Old Story" - Two boys begin to age rapidly into elderly gentlemen by the magic of their Aunt Dahlia, who plans to make them marry her elderly friends once they've grown up enough.
  • "The Scarecrow" - Three kids decide to steal the clothes off a scarecrow, but doing so makes them each sick in a way related to the clothing.
  • "Awesome Ants" - A boy feeds special pellets to the ants in his ant farm, only for them to grow enormous.
  • "Please Don't Feed The Bears" - Sarah's family forces her to go to a cutesy theme park instead of a horror-themed one, only for her to find that the people working there are literal bears that can turn others into more of them.
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  • "The Goblin's Glare" - Mike Mason creates a papier-mâché goblin, which comes to life.
  • "Bats About Bats" - Suzanne and Liz can't stand bats, and decide to try and bring their new classmate Dorrie — whose parents are bat scientists — around to their way of thinking.
  • "The Space Suit Snatcher" - A girl receives a strange suit as a gift, which supposedly belonged to an alien.

The stories contain examples of:

  • Adult Fear:
    • "An Old Story" presents readers with the premise of an elderly witch disguised as a loving, yet eccentric spinster aunt who physically ages her two young nephews with prunes to pimp them out to her equally elderly female friends for marriage.
    • "Please Don't Feed The Bears" has one when Sarah is nearly an hour late to meet her parents for lunch while they're in a theme park. They chide her for making them wait, but it's obviously Anger Born of Worry despite her parents saying they were having trouble entertaining her spoiled little sister Katie. Sarah wisely decides not to tell them that the Cuddle Bear employees nearly kidnapped her and wanted her to become a bear.
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  • Adults Are Useless: The parents in "The Wish" do nothing about Eugene's bullying.
  • All Just a Dream: "The Goblin's Glare" turns out to be the Goblin's dream.
  • Animated Tattoo: The short story "Attack of the Tattoo" has a kid dealing with an evil one, naturally.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: The short story "The Wish" has someone wishing they were an only child. They become the only child on Earth.
  • Big Brother Bully: Eugene to Max in "The Wish".
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: The ants become this in "Awesome Ants". They're the size of mountains by the end.
  • Cruel Twist Ending: "The Wish" ends when Max wishes he was an only child, due to his abusive older brother. He becomes the only child on Earth.
  • Eccentric Exterminator: Mr. Lantz in "Awesome Ants" is way too into his work, hunting bugs with steely determination and gleeful enjoyment, admiring the ants for their craftiness. He calls the protagonist a liar for claiming the ants from his ant farm grew to 3 inches, larger than any real life ants. Subverted at the end when everything turns out to be a dream, and giant ants rule the Earth. Mr. Lance reflects how things might have been different for humans, and warns the protagonist not to let the ants know that he dreamed that it was Mr. Lantz's job to kill them.
  • Evil Old Folks: "An Old Story" is about an older woman that's actually a witch who ages up and kidnaps children to sell into marriage to other old people who know they're getting married to children.
  • Exact Words:
    • "The Wish" features Max not wishing his brother Eugene was gone, but that Max was an only child. He's now literally the ONLY child on Earth.
    • "Bats About Bats" features a girl who repeatedly mentions she plans to be a bat scientist just like her parents. As in, she plans to be like her parents who are scientists that are also bats.
  • Halloween Episode: All of the short stories in this book are set around Halloween, or at least mention it. The only one that doesn't is An Old Story.
  • Karmic Twist Ending: The short story "Please Don't Feed the Bears" has this for the main character's bratty little sister. At Cuddle Bear Land, Sarah was nearly turned into a Cuddle Bear when a cast member gives her enchanted graham crackers. When she freaks out on finding some in her bag, she decides to keep it in case a lab can analyze it. After she and her family return home, Katie sneaks into her room and gobbles up the whole bag. Sarah, realizing there's nothing to be done, decides to enjoy her new Cuddle Bear.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: "The Goblin's Glare" features a papier-mâché goblin coming to life.
  • Parental Neglect: The parents in "An Old Story" are so busy that they often leave their kids at home alone, which gives Dahlia the chance to come in pretending to be their aunt and enact her plan. Unlike some of the other examples, they do at least show regret once they figure out what happened.
  • Persecution Flip: The short story "Awesome Ants" is about a boy who wins an ant vivaria in a contest but starts overfeeding them, which results in the ants growing to massive sizes. At the end, he wakes up to find that ants have taken over the earth and secluded humans in their own vivaria. The TV episode based on this story was even weirder; it's said that ants have *always* been the dominant species, so the boy was really dreaming about a Persecution Flip inversion.
  • Rapid Aging: The plot of "An Old Story" involves two boys being rapidly aged via magical prune juice so they can be sold as bridegrooms to elderly women.
  • Scary Scarecrows: "The Scarecrow" features a mysterious scarecrow that apparently comes to life.
  • Stripping the Scarecrow: "The Scarecrow", a short story about three kids who discover a mysterious scarecrow set up in front of an abandoned house has got articles of clothing they all want. Two of the kids take things off the scarecrow, but strange things start happening to them, leaving the third kid scared something will happen to her while trying to fight back the temptation of taking the scarecrow's gloves for herself. It turns out it was all a prank set up by the other two kids, but that doesn't explain why the scarecrow is suddenly smiling at the end.

The episode adaptations provide examples of:

  • Adaptational Alternate Ending: The ending to "Awesome Ants" is mostly the same, with the protagonist waking up from his "nightmare" about supersized ants to find that giant ants keep humans in town-sized vivaria. However, in the book this is explicitly meant to be karmic since it resulted from the food pellets that the boy gave them, and the ants kept growing until they took over. In the episode, it's more of a Tomato Surprise since it's indicated that ants have always been the dominant species on Earth, and he was really just dreaming about a role reversal.
  • Adaptational Job Change: In the short story of "Awesome Ants", Mr. Lantz is a science teacher but in the episode, he's an exterminator.
  • All Just a Dream: Zigzagged in "Awesome Ants". The protagonist's experience turns suspiciously nightmarish as the town is suddenly abandoned, there is a storm outside, and the ants are growing to ever-bigger proportions. Just before he gets killed by one, he wakes up at home and all seems fine. Then he gradually remembers the reality of the situation: in the real world ants are actually mountain-sized, and keep humans secluded in the human equivalent of ant farms and force them to survive on small pellets of blue food. In the book the ants just grew that big rather than always having been so.

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