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Reviewed by:
  • Disney Chills: Part of Your Nightmare by Vera Strange
  • Quinita Balderson

Strange, Vera Disney Chills: Part of Your Nightmare. Disney, 2020 [224p] (Disney Chills) Paper ed. ISBN 9781368048255 $6.99 Reviewed from galleys R Gr. 4-6

Shelly Anderson's parents own the aquarium in Triton Bay, but popular girl Kendall pressures Shelly to do environmentally irresponsible things like toss trash into the ocean. That's how she catches the attention of Ursula, the half-human, half-octopus sea witch, who tricks Shelly into making a contract-binding wish that allows her to be the fastest swimmer, beat her rivals, please her friends, maybe even impress her parents so much that they fall back in love. What Shelly does not anticipate is sending Kendall into a jealous rage by shattering her record time or that Ursula would gradually turn her into a fish. Vera Strange (nom de plume of Jennifer Brody) places a creative spin on the Disney classic The Little Mermaid in this first of a new novice horror series; there is no happy ending unless you consider the life lesson from Enrique, fellow marine biology enthusiast, who questions Shelly's decision to change for others rather than holding out for people who accept her as herself. Even Enrique's attempts to help Shelly escape the crafty, sea-dwelling diva's "squid pro quo" may not be enough, though, in this Goosebumps-flavored Disney tale that hearkens back to the tale's grittier Andersen origin. Hand this book to a fan of Grimm's fairy tales or Disney villains; they'll appreciate the unhappily ever after. [End Page 498]



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