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A CHILLING READ

Looking for a spooky book to get you in the Halloween mood? Here are three, targeted for Young Adults, that should do the trick.

* "Gothic! 10 Original Dark Tales" (Candlewick Press, $15.99) includes some genuinely frightening tales from the likes of Joan Aiken, Gregory Maguire, Garth Nix and Neil Gaiman. Particularly memorable are Vivian VandeVelde's story, "Morgan Roehmar's Boys," about a Halloween hay ride and the ghost of a serial killer and "Watch and Wake," a very creepy story by M.T. Anderson (who wrote "Feed") about witches that feast on people's faces.

* "Abarat: Days of Magic, Nights of War" by Clive Barker (HarperCollins, $14.99, 489 pages). Horror author offers his second Abarat book and it's an elaborate, richly imagined fantasy about a girl named Candy Quackenbush, from Chickentown, Minn., who finds herself in the amazing world of Abarat, pursued by the evil Lord of Midnight and his fiendish grandma, Mater Motley. Barker offers an intricate and interesting plot, a wondrously conceived connection between the two worlds of "The Hereafter" and Abarat, fascinating characters and such Halloweenish horrors as huge stinking Scabrood insects, some as big as wrestlers. His paintings are amazing.

* Bram Stoker's Dracula edited by Jan Needle (illustrated by Gary Blythe, Candlewick Press, $18.99). Needle makes the horror classic accessible to modern readers; the pages are rimmed in blood-red to chilling effect.

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