Normally, you can’t really judge a book by its cover, but what about those times when the cover is genuinely the best part?

That seemed to be the case with Goosebumps, R.L. Stine’s kid-friendly horror series which totally nearly 70 installments from 1992-1997, introducing many of us to the joy of reading horror stories (as well as the sense of accomplishment to be had from finishing a book in after just a couple of hours).  My love affair with the series was short-lived enough that by the time the Goosebumps TV show arrived in 1995 I had already moved on to reading Stephen King novels, arrogantly looking down on Goosebumps as being stupid kids stuff. Three years earlier, though, I was regularly rushing to the bookstore to gawk at the latest Goosebumps book cover. In fact, to this day I don’t really remember much about the actual plots in the books. However, mention a title to me and I’ll laugh at how clearly I can recall the cover.

Say Cheese and Die!

Oh, yeah, that was the one with a family picture of a cookout but everyone in the picture looks skeletal ala They Live?

H236_SCH_GB4_Cheese_0.tif

Bingo!

Let’s Get Invisible.

Duh. Boy looking at his reflection in the mirror and freaking out about how his part of his body seems to be disappearing.

goosebumps_letsgetinvisible

You get the general idea at this point

That’s either cool or sad or cause for a suspicious glance and, “How do I know you didn’t simply pull those covers up on Google Images to jog your memory before describing them?” Wow. Really?  Where’s the trust?

You always knew exactly what you were going to get with a Goosebumps book based on that cover, and for many of us any of the covers featuring that ventriloquist doll Slappy were must-reads. To honor the release of the new movie, HalloweenCostumes thought it would be fun to re-design some of the classic Goosebumps covers, telling me over email, “The covers were definitely the most memorable thing about the Goosebumps books. So it was kind of fun to really flip it around and boil the image down to the most basic elements.” It’s a fun visual exercise as well as a test: Would the 8-year-old version of you have wanted to read any of those books if they had the more elegant, stripped-down covers?  Not going to lie – I probably wouldn’t have.

Here are some of their covers (preceded by the corresponding real cover):

1) Welcome to Dead House (1992)

Dedgoosebumps-welcome-to-dead-house

2) Night of the Living Dummy (1993)

Night-of-the-Living-Dummygoosebumps-night-of-the-living-dummy

3) Welcome to Camp Nightmare (1993)

Welgoosebumps-welcome-to-camp-nightmare

4) Piano Lessons Can Be Murder (1993) – aka, The all-time best Goosebumps title

Piano_lessons_can_be_murdergoosebumps-piano-lessons-can-be-murder

5) Why I’m Afraid of Bees (1994) – As if My Girl hadn’t already ensured our lifelong hatred of bees

0590477390goosebumps-why-im-afraid-of-bees

6) The Phantom of the Auditorium (1994) – aka, I can’t believe it took R.L. Stine that long to get around to a Phantom of the Opera story.

BOOKS035871Igoosebumps-phantom-of-the-auditorium

7) Calling All Creeps (1996)

Calling_All_Creepsgoosebumps-calling-all-creeps

8) My Best Friend Is Invisible (1997)

51CfCaMIspLgoosebumps-my-best-friend-is-invisible

Source: HalloweenCostumes Blog

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Posted by Kelly Konda

Grew up obsessing over movies and TV shows. Worked in a video store. Minored in film at college because my college didn't offer a film major. Worked in academia for a while. Have been freelance writing and running this blog since 2013.

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