Things That Go Bump

Re-Reading RL Stine's Bizarrely Beloved Goosebumps Series

Book the Fifth: The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb 01/11/2012

Filed under: Goosebumps — Christy Admiraal @ 2:57 pm
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Tagline: “What will wake the dead?”

Premise: Yet another 12-year-old protagonist, Gabe, visits Egypt and winds up in the Great Pyramid with his cousin Sari and his uncle Ben, an archaeologist plumbing the deaths of the pyramid. One member of Ben’s research team, an Egyptian man named Ahmed, warns Ben, the other researchers, Gabe, and Sari of a curse that will befall them, should they continue their work. They continue their work, Ahmed enacts the curse, and chaos ensues, ending with Gabe, Ben, and Sari nearly getting mummified and the mummies striking back against Ahmed.

Creepiness factor: Middle of the road. Mummies aren’t a particularly frightening horror trope, but the idea of an ancient curse and very recent mummification ala Ahmed is a little chill-inducing.

Signature Stine moment: A rare moment of self awareness in regard to how stale the jokes are, as follows.

“‘As you probably know,’ he started, tearing off a chunk of the flat bread, ‘the pyramid was built sometime around 2500 B.C., during the reign of the Pharaoh Khufu.’

‘Gesundheit,’ Sari said. Another lame joke.

Her father chuckled. I made a face at her.”

Benchmark moment: In the previous book, it was death. In this book, it’s the transition from third-person omniscient narration to first-person, and it’s a vast improvement, one that carries over into the next book and, from what I can recall, the remainder of the series.

Accuracy of title: 100% accurate. That about sums it up.

Overall rating: 6/10. By no means perfect, but this one was a lot more fun than that which came before it. Next time: Let’s Get Invisible!, the second title that warrants an exclamation point!

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