Stare into the Wooden Face of Fear!
Britney Crosby thinks her cousin Ethan is pretty weird--and she happens to be right. Ethan won't stop tormenting Britney with an old ventriloquist's dummy. And the puppet has plans for Britney, too!
Enter a Land of a Thousand Horrors!
Next, someone will be offered a vacation at a popular "scream park." An entire week for free? You'd have to be a real dummy to refuse that! But some guests aren't allowed to escape HorrorLand after just six days and seven frights...
Late one night, Britney Crosby and her best friend, Molly Molloy, are in a graveyard digging a hole. The girls intend to bury an evil item that's been tormenting them. They are interrupted when a hand juts out of a nearby bush and grabs Britney.
The story jumps backwards several days. Britney is worried because her troublesome cousin, Ethan, is coming to stay with her. Ethan always torments Britney and Molly. Britney's distaste for Ethan is worsened by the fact that she'll have to give her room to him and sleep in the sowing room. When Ethan arrives, Britney and her mother notice that Ethan is carrying a ventriloquist dummy. Ethan calls the dummy "Mr. Badboy" and addresses it as his best friend. While Ethan is showing Britney Mr. Badboy, the puppet hits Britney on the head. He is scolded for this, but he pleas innocence. Wanting an escape, Britney plans on going to Molly's house, but Britney's mother demands that she take Ethan with her. Molly is disappointed when Ethan comes over, but her dad takes an interest in Ethan's dummy. Mr. Molloy, a globetrotter and collector of rare artifacts, decides to take Ethan and Britney up to his attack so they can see the new relic that he's acquired: a shrunken head, referred to as the Mind Stealer. Mr. Molloy reveals that, according to legend, the head can steal people's minds if it touches them, leaving them completely blank. Even though the head is under glass, Britney is scared by it. As dinnertime approaches, Britney goes back home, taking Ethan with her.
Before dinner, Ethan shows Britney his comedy act with Mr. Badboy. Mr. Badboy begins insulting Britney, but she laughs it off. Ethan says that Mr. Badboy has a mind of his own, but Britney thinks this is ridiculous. Britney remembers that she left one of her favorite posters in her room, and she wants to move it to the sowing room. Ethan tries to stop her, saying that Mr. Badboy will be angered by this action. Britney takes the poster anyways. Later, at dinner, Mr. Badboy is given his own seat at the table near Britney. Mr. Badboy makes rude comments all throughout dinner. Britney thinks Ethan is responsible, but Britney's parents blame her.
The following night, Britney eats dinner at Molly's house. When Britney comes home, she finds that her favorite poster has been destroyed. One of Britney's paintings, an illustration of her deceased pet dog, has also been defaced. Britney is furious, and she goes to Ethan's room. She notices that Ethan isn't in his room. Mr. Badboy suddenly begins talking on his own, and he says that he doesn't like Britney. Britney runs and tells her parents about this incident, but they don't believe her.
Late the following day, Britney gets an unexpected call from Molly. Molly insists that she needs to bury the Mind Stealer. She says that it is too dangerous, and her father isn't around to help her. Britney sneaks out and goes to Molly's house, and the girls take the shrunken head, which is encased in glass, to a cemetery. They begin digging a hole. Britney is startled when a hand juts out of a nearby bush and grabs her. She quickly realizes that the hand belongs to Ethan. The girls finish burying the doll, and the three kids leave.
The next day, Britney's mother forces her to take Ethan to Sunset House, the retirement home where Britney's great aunt lives. At Sunset House, Britney gives a painting lesson to a group of senior citizens. Ethan begins performing with Mr. Badboy for the group. The doll immediately begins insulting the audience. Mr. Badboy throws two cans of Britney's paint on an audience member. Sunset House's director blames Britney for the incident, and she calls Britney's mom. Britney is grounded. That night, Britney sneaks out of her house and runs to Molly's house. The two girls begin searching through Mr. Molloy's archives in the hopes of finding information about Mr. Badboy. Britney finds a folder about ventriloquism, and inside the folder is an old photo of Mr. Badboy. Writing on the back of the photograph reveals that the dummy's real name is Slappy, and he is evil. The writing also cites six ancient words that can supposedly be used to make the dummy come to life and go to sleep.
The two girls go back to Britney's house. Since Ethan isn't around, they are able to sneak into his room and confront Slappy. Britney reads the ancient words that the old document provided her. The dummy slumps forward, and Britney assumes that she has succeeded. Molly finds a strange remote in Ethan's room. Upon pressing one of the buttons, Slappy moves in response. The remote is a controller for the dummy. Britney learns that the dummy wasn't alive, and Ethan had been the one causing trouble.
Molly leaves, and Britney goes to sleep. Britney is awoken in the middle of the night by a tap on her shoulder. Britney is faced by Slappy. Slappy thanks Britney for waking him up, and he addresses her as his slave. Slappy demands that Britney go back to the cemetery and retrieve the Mind Stealer. Britney refuses to go, and Slappy says that he will go by himself and drain Britney's brain once he retrieve's the shrunken head. Slappy leaves, and Britney covertly follows him. While Slappy is digging up the shrunken head, Britney tackles him. Britney's parents drive up to the cemetery, and they say that they've followed her. They say that they will take her to a doctor. In a burst of rage, Britney smashes Slappy's head through the glass encasing that surrounds the shrunken head. Slappy's head taps the doll, and an electric sound rings out. Slappy falls limp. Before leaving with her parents, Britney reburies the shrunken head. As Britney is leaving, she hears Slappy's voice. He promises that he'll be back.
The writing in this section is based off of someone else's work.
Britney and Molly are excited about going to visit HorrorLand. Molly briefly questions how HorrorLand knew to invite her along with Britney's family. However, Britney's father insists it is normal for theme parks to know a lot about people.
Upon entering the park, the Horror working the ticket booth pretends to eat the girls' invitation. The Horror can't admit the family until he makes every member scream so they can log it for identification purposes, which he achieves by burning their luggage with a flamethrower. Another Horror pulls up in themed cab and drives the family at quick speed through HorrorLand. They pass many, many punned attractions, then the driver soon crashes the taxi and they come to a stop.
Everyone gets out to wander the grounds, while looking for their on-site hotel. Britney and Molly check out a mask shop that ominously features masks of their faces! The family eventually finds the hotel, which of course is called the Stagger Inn. While waiting for their rooms, a renegade Horror tells the family that they are in danger. The helpful Horror pleads with them to escape while they still can and find the "other park"...
The hotel's guide, Druella, leads Britney's parents to their room on the second floor, then takes the girls up to their private suite on the thirteenth floor. The girls are delighted to see an awesome room. The room has a flat-screen television and plenty of clothes in their size but no mirrors! The girls are so excited that they want to tell their parents, but the girls cannot find them anywhere. Both girls go to the main counter. The Horror working behind it informs them that Britney's parents checked out.
When the girls go back to their parents room, they find Mr. Crosby's camera. They inspect it and find that the camera contains a picture of Slappy.
- In Portugal, Ethan calls Slappy "Sr. Maroto", instead of "Mr. Badboy".
- In France, Slappy is called "M. Méchant-Garçon".
|Audiobook||Release date||Length||Narrated by||Published by|
|August 2008||2 hours, 34 minutes||Alissa Hunnicutt||Scholastic Inc.|
- Britney's parents names are revealed to be Sean and Roz Crosby in the book.
- The director of Sunset House has the same name as the music teacher from Night of the Living Dummy.
- This is the second book in which Slappy is at first referred to by a different name, the first being Night of the Living Dummy III. (He was first referred to as, "Smiley" in that book.)
|Goosebumps HorrorLand series|
|#01 Revenge of the Living Dummy||#8 Say Cheese — and Die Screaming!||#15 Heads, You Lose!|
|#02 Creep from the Deep||#9 Welcome to Camp Slither||#16 Weirdo Halloween|
|#03 Monster Blood for Breakfast!||#10 Help! We Have Strange Powers!||#17 The Wizard of Ooze|
|#04 The Scream of the Haunted Mask||#11 Escape from HorrorLand||#18 Slappy New Year!|
|#05 Dr. Maniac vs. Robby Schwartz||#12 The Streets of Panic Park||#19 The Horror at Chiller House|
|#06 Who's Your Mummy?||#13 When the Ghost Dog Howls|
|#07 My Friends Call Me Monster||#14 Little Shop of Hamsters|