Are You Afraid Yet?: The Science behind Scary Stuff written by Stephen James O'Meara, illustrated by Jeremy Kaposy, Kids Can Press, 2008
I have to issue a disclaimer right off the bat, I do not really do "horror-scary" stories very often. I'm not opposed to them, I just don't enjoy them. I have never read a Stephen King novel. I do know that the number one most frequently searched term in my school library OPAC was "scary." So, anticipating how much this book might thrill young readers I eagerly opened it.
Then I shrieked!
Yes, this book made me scream.
The author's introduction to the physiology of fear, "Have a SAFE Fright" was reassuring, almost comforting knowing my amygdala was on alert! I looked through the parts on mummies, UFOs, vampires, and mad scientists with interest. Then I read "Keeping you Head" concerning the guillotine, followed by "The Staring Eyes" and I shrieked, screamed, hollered, dropped the book and shuddered.
Good job, Stephen James O'Meara. Mission accomplished.
O'Meara entwines stories from history along with scientific "Freaky Facts" which leave the reader to ponder the nature of skeletons, oxygen deprivation, werewolves and maggots.