Kelli and Shawn Anderson are not excited about having to move to another state - especially because their new home is directly next to a giant swamp. But their dad is a scientist and he's going down there to study the local flora and fauna.
Unfortunately for Kelli and Shaun, there seem to be some very strange creatures that live around their house. They keep hearing about the legend of the Shaggedy, an ancient beast that lives far below the surface of the swamp and can cause a whole lot of damage. Can Kelli and Shawn convince their dad to move back home before it is too late?
We are all big Goosebumps fans in this house, as a series I loved as a child to a series I now enjoy sharing with my children. My ten year old daughter was never very interested but they have become something we enjoy together as a family, even my four old looks forward to them and as any parent is aware keeping a four year old interested in a book is a difficult task.
We easily read this in one evening, it is easy enough for Mr 8 and Miss 10 to read alone and the books are not to scary for them although they could possibly be if they were not use to stories in this nature. The "Here comes the Shaggedy" book is based on Kelli and Shawn who have moved states to accommodate their Dads new job. They are quick to discover some pretty creepy creatures. They hear about the legend of Shaggedy and try to convince their dad to move back to where they come from, but can they do it in time? As in usual Goosebumps style there are many unexpected twist and that is what I really enjoy with them!
The Goosebumps series in my opinion is a totally re-readable lot of books and a must for any child's library! They make great gifts and are great to read together as a family or to keep the kids occupied!
The books in the Goosebumps series are lots of fun. Scary maybe, but not too intense for young readers. Add to the mix a generous helping of humour and a not-quite-probable plot and you have the ingredients for a highly successful collection of stories. This book follows the Goosebumps formula, providing a few thrills along the way and including a couple of twists so that the ending is not quite what you might have expected.
What better place to set a fantasy novel than in the swamps of Florida with their mysterious waterways and overgrown pathways? The story begins with a personal invitation from the author to enter the Goosebumps office and experience a very different adventure, and from then on the reader does not get a chance to look back!
I did like the way that the bullies were depicted. This will resonate for any child who has moved house, had to start at a new school, and then been targetted for being different. Even though the situation turned out to be not quite as Kelli and Shawn had thought, the whole idea of bullying is certainly well presented and does highlight it as an issue in schools.
Also important to the plot is Kelli's dyscalculia or her inability to manage numbers. Although less common that dyslexia, this is a real and most frustrating condition which can also cause a child to be targetted by bullies. By not factoring her dyscalculia in, Kelli nearly ruins the outcome as she hatches a clever plan to pay the bullies back on their own terms.
Coupled with the theme of bullying is a second theme of magic and the supernatural. It seems to be mandatory in many children's books these days that an element of fantasy is included. As the world becomes increasingly more dependent on science and technology and measurable proof, people compensate by actively seeking out publications that provide some escapism in the form of fantasy and stories that stimulate the imagination.
I encourage everyone to read this book. Accept the challenge and remember that there aren't really any Shaggedies around - it is just a story. But make sure you lock the doors and turn all the lights on before you start reading. Just in case...
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