Books & Literature

Book Review: Horror Heights: The Slime: Book 1, by Bec Hill

JUNIOR FICTION: Welcome to Horror Heights: can the children who live here conceal the strange goings on behind closed doors?

A funny and scary story all about slime, friendships and finding your true talent.

Adelaide-born Bec Hill is now living in London. She is a comedian, children’s TV presenter, actor, director and now author. Many will know her from the CBBC series, The Dog Ate My Homework. Horror Heights: The Slime is the first book in a new series.

We are told in the beginning of the book, in a note from the author, that everything we are about to read is true, but all names have been changed so as not to affect any current investigations … and for privacy and safety. All very ominous!

The Slime is set in a place Bec Hill has dubbed “Horror Heights”. Connie has given herself the title Queen of Slime (everyone needs a talent!). Unfortunately, her slime is continually confiscated by Ms Strapp, the teacher who seems to enjoy keeping children in after school and setting extra homework. Connie insists on bringing it to school so she can always be the Queen of Slime, but with it all now living in the teacher’s cupboard, Connie has to work out how to get more. Usually she manages to sneak it into the shopping trolley when she goes each week with her dad, but dad has hurt his foot and has chosen to do the shopping online. So Connie decides to make her own from a recipe she finds online … with a few small additions.

Unfortunately, the slime comes to life and Connie, with her friends Nat, Amy and Allyce, need to save the day.

Thirty-one short chapters make up the story, also divided into days: Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, which adds to the sense of urgency. Hill has kept the story interesting by capitalising urgent conversations and putting the really scary ones in bold. Text messages are in speech bubbles. Most pages have splats of slime on them. Connie’s two main plans: her original slime heist plan and then to rid the world of the slime are both written as a four-step method—both very amusing.

The textured, colourful front cover depicting a slime hand rising from a rubbish bin entices the prospective reader to look further.

Hill’s writing is easily accessible to all children who are competent readers. There are no tricky words that need explaining, plus the story is just scary enough to make the reader want to find out more, but not enough to cause nightmares! The story ends with us asking what happens next. Perfect for the new book in the series.

Reviewed by Sue Mauger

Distributed by: Hachette Australia
Released: September 2021
RRP: $15.99

This review is the opinion of the reviewer and not Glam Adelaide.

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