Books: Another Stab At Chills!

R.L. Stine saw his Goosebumps fade. Now he's trying to lure his readers back from Harry Potter

Just a couple of years ago, R.L. Stine was the most popular children's author in publishing history. He sometimes received 2,000 letters a week from his readers, and young fans mobbed his appearances at bookstores, eager to glimpse the scary grownup, dressed all in black, who churned out monthly novels for creepy series called Goosebumps (aimed at readers 8 to 12) and Fear Street (10 to 14), which in turn led to scads of merchandising goodies, a hit kids' TV show on the Fox network and an exhibit at Disney World.

Then, something appropriately eerie happened to Stine. He didn't exactly...

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