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Books for almost 9 yo that are kind of scary but not dark

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

My DD loves scary books but, scary as in mysteries.  She's a huge Nancy Drew fan.  She loves the older ones but really loves the newer ones which seem to be a bit more intense on the mystery and suspense. 

 

She is running out of Nancy Drew so I was hoping to come up with some other, more recent series type books that are sort of scary but, not dark - nothing sinister or the like.  Any ideas?

 

I came across the School of Fear books.  Anyone have any experience with them?

http://www.amazon.com/School-Fear-Gitty-Daneshvari/dp/031603326X/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1289788935&sr=1-2

post #2 of 13

Goosebumps? My 8 year old son loves those.

post #3 of 13

What would you consider too dark? Harry Potter? Lemony Snickett?

 

My son loves Spiderwick Chronicles - the movie would be much too scary for him, but the books are fine. They are a bit dark, though.

 

Has she tried Trixie Belden? I think they are slightly less scary than Nancy Drew, but they are great mysteries.

post #4 of 13

My 9 yo loves Goosbumps!

post #5 of 13

James Howe's Bunnicula books? They aren't scary, but they are humor based on scary stories. Or Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book. My dd1 has enjoyed all of these. 

post #6 of 13

At that age I loved John Bellairs books. They're creepy and mysterious but not too intense. "The House with a Clock in Its Walls" is a good place to start.

post #7 of 13

 

The Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg is a classic mystery for young readers. 

 

Pure Dead Wicked by Deb Gliori (and a bunch of sequels) is fun, with more yucky gross out stuff than creepy, scary stuff, about a sort-of Addams Family in a crumbling mansion in Scotland.  

 

I haven't got around to reading the Enola Holmes (Sherlock's younger sister) series by Nancy Springer yet, so I don't know how scary it is, but the mysteries are supposed to be quite good. 

 

The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart 

 

The Name of this Book is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch 

 

The Echo Falls mystery trilogy by Peter Abrahams - the first book starts with a murder and it put DD right off the entire series, which is too bad, because they are well written. They may not suit your DD now, but may in a couple of years if she still likes the mystery genre. I think if a child can read about all the torture, murder and mayhem in Harry Potter, they'll do fine with this series. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #8 of 13

I really liked The Egypt Game when I was younger. It's kind of a mystery without a little bit of "oooh, that's creepy" but nothing overtly scary in it.  Also by Zilpha Keatly Snyder are The Headless Cupid and Season of Ponies, which is more magic than mystery but still good.

 

Fog Magic is also sort of mysterious with magical ideas. 

 

Mary Downing Hahn writes ghost stories for children.  They typically have a happy resolution at the end.  You might want to check one out from the library and preview to see what you think. Wait Till Helen Comes: A Ghost Story gave me shivers!

 

 

 

 

post #9 of 13

I remembered another one!

 

The Mysterious Benedict Society

 

I just read this, and the sequel The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey, last summer.  SUPER fun!

 

Also, if she likes Nancy Drew what about Trixie Belden?

post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by SparklingGemini View Post

I really liked The Egypt Game when I was younger. It's kind of a mystery without a little bit of "oooh, that's creepy" but nothing overtly scary in it.  Also by Zilpha Keatly Snyder are The Headless Cupid and Season of Ponies, which is more magic than mystery but still good.

 

 

 

 


 

That reminds me of The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin, for no other reason than the similar titles. The Westing Game has a nice little puzzle at it's core. 

 

I also neglected to suggest the original Sherlock Holmes stories by Arthur Conan Doyle.  They are an inspiration for the young heroine in the Echo Falls books, and I mentioned the Enola Holmes books, so I don't know how I could have overlooked them.  

post #11 of 13

There are two picture books for older readers that I like, look them over, they are scary, I'm not sure about dark...they are both beautifully illustrated.

 

The Shadow by Donna Diamond

 

The Wolves in the Walls by Neil Gaiman

post #12 of 13

The Hardy Boys books are similar to Nancy Drew.

post #13 of 13
Totally The Egypt Game! I recently read it to my 10yo, who loved it.
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