Every kid in the nineties that loved horror has come across Alvin Schwartz’s “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” at one point in time. It’s still considered a very effective and excellent trilogy of books comprised of some of the best urban folklore and scary tales ever produced. Author Joe Oliveto has created something very much in the vein of the series of books with everything from a cover scheme and storytelling format that’s a loving tribute to the nostalgia of the original books.
“Scary Stories to Tell if you Dare” is meant for the original audience and new audiences, packing in twenty five stories in sixty five pages. Oliveto even delivers a slew of striking imagery and illustrations very much in the vein of the “Scary Story” books and they successfully add to the experience. They’re stunning simplicity adds to the tone and the tales never shy away from trying to spook the readers as much as possible, in such a short time. Many of stories are variations of tales and legends I’ve been hearing since I was a child and they’re always a lot of fun to read about.
Some of the better tales include the rotting body underneath the hotel bed, a girl who goes in to the woods to take nature photographs, and a pretty creepy tale of sisters being terrorized by someone behind a door. One of the best tales involves one last deed from a mother where a couple driving along a road speed past a woman covered in blood. Hoping to help her, they follow her in to the woods to make a pretty stunning discovery. For fans of the Alvin Schwartz anthologies, Joe Oliveto’s own horror anthology is a top notch tribute to folklore and horror.