Due to some holiday delay, A Trip Down Fear Street took longer than intended, so I crammed all three of the Fear Street superchillers Silent Night 1, 2, and 3 into a single review.
Silent Night: Happy holidays – you’re dead!
Silent Night 2: Jingle Bells – Santa kills!
Silent Night 3: ‘Tis the Season…to die.
I’m quite the fan of “Jingle Bells – Santa kills!” That could be a catchy little ditty.
Reva Dalby is the rich bitch of Shadyside. A lot of people want her dead, but the question is who?
The first three of these delightfully festive covers are by fan favorite (nominated as such by this fan) Bill Schmidt while the others I found on Goodreads and just seemed worth sharing. Also, there’s an abundance of turtlenecks.
All three of the Silent Night books follow a pretty similar formula which makes summing them up fairly easy. Our main protagonist is redheaded Reva Dalby, the richest bitch in all of Shadyside. Reva thinks such gems as this:
“Promptness is such a boring virtue.” (Silent Night)
Apparently, she’s such a snot because her mother died a few years prior, but really Reva ends up being the girl you love to hate, and you understand perfectly why everyone wants to off her, but I guess you’re supposed to root for her because she’s the protagonist with the dead mom. Anyway, Reva’s “Daddy” (because rich girls only call their fathers “Daddy”) owns the local department store Dalby’s which employs many of the Shadyside folk. Mr. Dalby fires people a lot, so the folks of Shadyside not only dislike Reva, but also hate her Dad. Mr. Dalby insists on Reva working there so she will learn important life lessons like being an asshole to poor people.
In Silent Night, one guy is sending Reva threatening gifts such as blood in cologne bottles or tricking her with needles in her lipstick (pretty creative, Stine – I still remember this moment decades later) because of the way Reva treats his girlfriend. This dude is just the red herring though for the inept teenage trio of Mickey, Clay, and Reva’s cousin Pam. They decide to break into Dalby’s to avenge Mickey’s Dad who was fired by Mr. Dalby. Of course, they are teenagers so they screw it all up. Oh, but, wait they are just yet another red herring for the real antagonist who is actually Mickey’s Dad. Told you a lot of people want Reva hurt or dead. Anyway, Mickey’s Dad dies by electrocution via Christmas tree after trying to attack Reva. After all this, Reva decides to turn over a new leaf. It lasts an entire year.
Silent Night 2 kicks off with Reva suffering some mild PTSD from the last book. Her dad thinks the way for her to recover from this is by having her work the Dalby’s perfume counter again. Don’t let the cover fool you though – there are no murderous Santas in this one. Unfortunately. Anyway, Reva is working on stealing her cousin’s boyfriend (she did the same thing in Silent Night to another girl) and, the new inept teenager trio is Diane, her boyfriend Pres, and his brother Danny. They decided to kidnap Reva, and after a few failed attempts manage to snatch her up. There’s more ineptitude. It’s boring. I want to see skeletons dressed in Santa costumes or something.
Silent Night 3 is Reva in college. This one is a little different from the others, but it’s still a lot of people wanting Reva dead. No need to really get into it.
While I found the books kind of dull because I don’t really enjoy murder mystery, I distinctly remember the characterization of Reva. Reva is a little unique in the Fear Street-verse because she isn’t a likeable protagonist, but that’s probably why I remembered her (and the needle in lipstick thing). I imagine I probably loved Reva the way I loved Cheryl Blossom (also a redhead) of the Archie comics.
Moral of the Story
Using stupid nicknames to conceal the identity of one of the bad guys is a cheap trick.
Quite a few, but the perfect holiday death is electrocution by Christmas tree in the first Silent Night. Not quite Treevenge, but close. However, many deaths (both male and female) do occur to teach Reva a lesson which is an interesting twist on the Women in Refrigerators trope.
Horror meets Christmas never gets old.
Zagnuts (do they still make these?), Arnold Schwarzenegger movies, so many turtlenecks, Doc Martens.
3 out of 5. While Reva is one of the more interesting protagonists of Shadyside, I found these a little dull. I am starting to think the superchillers are just too long. Maybe this is why Stine shines on Twitter.