Cover image for Boo : a novel
Boo : a novel
Gutteridge, Rene.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Colorado Springs, Colo. : WaterBrook Press, 2003.
Physical Description:
299 pages ; 21 cm
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FICTION Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Talk about working out your faith with fear and trembling -a scheme is plotted to put the fright back into Skary-and get their most famous resident out of love and back into the thrill business.

The biggest thing to happen to Skary, Indiana, is renowned horror novelist Wolfe Boone-or, "Boo," as the locals fondly call him. For the past sixteen years, the reclusive writer has been the town's greatest attraction, having unintentionally turned the once-struggling Skary into a thriving tourist-trap for the dark side: from the Haunted Mansion restaurant, famous for its "bloody fingers" (fries splattered with ketchup) to Spooky's Bookstore (where employees dress like the walking dead).

But when a newly reformed Boone suddenly quits the genre and starts to pursue Skary's favorite girl-next-door, Ainsley Parker, the little town made famous by his writings becomes truly horrified. The residents know that the only solution is for Boo to fall out of love and get back to scaring.

Filled with humor, small town charm, and a gentle message of enduring faith, Boo shows how even the most colorful group of busybodies and hypocrites can become a community changed forever by God.

Author Notes

RENE GUTTERIDGE is the award-winning, best-selling author of twenty-four novels, including the Boo series, the Storm series, and the novelization for The Ultimate Gift , as well as Scoop and Snitch, the first two Occupational Hazard novels. She lives with her husband, Sean, and their two children in Oklahoma City. You can visit her at



Chapter 1 MISS MISSY PEEPLE shuffled down the gravel hill as fast as her callous, fungus-ridden feet would let her go. She could feel her ankles swelling. She hadn't moved this fast in years. But she had news that would shake up her little town of Skary like they'd never been shaken before. This was comparable to the news her sister, Sissy, had delivered almost thirteen years ago. At seventy-two, poor Sissy had slipped on some gravel and hit her head on a slab of concrete on her way to tell the important news. But she had made Missy proud. She had managed to utter in her dying breath the words that would have the town talking for years: Dr. Schoot and Nurse Wintery were having an affair. She'd given her life for the sake of Skary. But this old maid had news that might raise Sissy from the grave. Missy huffed and puffed her way down Scarlet Hill, maneuvering her cane this way and that to keep herself from tumbling to her death. It was a balmy day-oh, perhaps not balmy, but sunny and slightly warm for this late in the season, and Missy was sure she was actually breaking a sweat. The clock tower rang out proudly that it was noon, and only a few hundred feet in front of her Missy could see the folks gathering for lunchtime at the community center. Her lungs seemed to collapse further with each breath she tried to take. But she must keep going. Quite frankly, she'd rather die than not tell all. She made her way onto the sidewalk, where her shoes glided more easily but for the crack here or there. She managed to avoid those so as to not break her deceased mother's back. Howard the barber stood outside his shop smoking a stinky cigar and reading the weather report from the newspaper. "Those dumb weathermen! Look at how bright the sun is shining today, and they're saying here that it's going to be cloudy! What do they know?" "Not now, Howard! Not now!" Missy spat as she scooted past him, clubbing him in the foot with the end of her cane. "I must get to the center. I've got news!" Howard laughed heartily. "What is it this time, Missy? Dr. Twyne's cloning pigs again?" Missy scowled and gave Howard a nasty wave of her hand. Her news was too pressing to go back and argue with Howard about the pig cloning, though she did have proof of that, no matter what anyone said. Fifty yards to go and her arthritis kicked in. She managed to scoop an aspirin from the bottom of her purse, chew it up, swallow it, and never miss a step. She always did like that bitter taste. Half her bun was falling down, her nylon stockings were barely holding up, and her polyester floral dress was sticking to several parts of her body by the time she managed to shove her way through the line into the center and make her way to the small platform that held the American flag the way an athlete holds a trophy. She thumped the microphone needlessly. It always stayed on. No one knew how to turn it off. But it gave a high-pitched shrill of a sound that hunched backs and raised hairs. Missy Peeple smiled authoritatively as everyone turned to see what was going on. "Excuse me, excuse me," she said, hushing the already quiet crowd. Her brows arched, and her eyes narrowed. "I have a very important announcement to make. One I think everyone will be interested in hearing." She glanced around the room, pleased to have everyone's attention. She liked attention. She craved it. And at eight-seven years old, she was just about to hit the pinnacle of her life. She said a little prayer. Not to God, but to Sissy, hoping she was somewhere watching this monumental event.