Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Goosebumps #44: Say Cheese and Die-Again!

Greg is still recovering from the problems he encountered in the last book. All of his friends are now in a different class and he is stuck with Mr. Saur, a gruff teacher the kids nickname Sourball. The teacher makes everyone give a speech in front of the class about a true story, which counts for half of their overall grade for the semester.

Greg tells the story of the evil camera, which pisses off Mr. Saur. Saur claims that the story was a figment of his imagination and gives him a failing grade. Greg begs for a second chance because if he gets good grades, his parents will let him visit his cousins near Yosemite for the summer. The teacher agrees to give him another shot, but only if he brings in the camera.

Shari begs him to leave it alone because she doesn’t want to relive the events of the last book. Greg sneaks out anyway and goes back to the old house, but discovers that someone tore it down. He meets Jon, who tells him that his dad bought the old house and threw away everything inside. He does remember seeing a camera, so Greg jumps in the dumpster and finds it hidden behind a dead raccoon.

As soon as he sees the camera, Greg has second thoughts. He decides that the camera is probably valuable and something his dad would want. They fight over the camera and Greg accidentally takes a picture that shows Jon with a large nail sticking through his foot. Jon runs off to show his dad, trips and steps down hard on a nail. As they rush him to the hospital, he sneaks off with the camera.

Greg shows the camera and the photo to Saur, who still doesn’t believe it. He thinks that Greg faked the photo with an old nail gag, like the arrow through the head bit. Shari still wants him to throw the camera away and when they fight, he accidentally takes a photo of her that comes out in negative form. Pissed off, she takes a photo of him that shows him swelled up like a balloon.

The next day he notices that all of his clothes feel tighter. He jumps on his bike and flattens two tires and he just keeps growing. Shari starts disappearing or wasting away because she loses weight so fast. Both sets of parents take them to the doctor, but the doctors have no clue what is going on.

He asks Shari to take a second photo of him, hoping that it will take away the first photo. Instead it shows him with alligator skin and right away his skin starts peeling and flaking off. Greg decides that he should ask his brother Terry for help because Terry works in a photo processing lab. They ask him to reverse the original photos. He does, but it doesn’t work.

The next day, they both wake up looking the same way they did originally. Greg is super excited, but still wants to prove something to his teacher. He decides to take his photo because Saur deserves whatever he gets. Just as he is about to take the photo, Saur grabs the camera, turns it around and takes a photo of the whole class. Grinning, he asks Greg what might happen next…