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Chain Letter

(Chain Letter #1)

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  6,054 ratings  ·  260 reviews
They all shared the same secret...now they would share the same terror

When Alison first read the chain letter signed 'Your Caretaker', she thought it was some terrible sick joke. Someone, somewhere knew about that awful night when she and six other friends committed an unthinkable crime in the desolate California desert. And now that person was determined to make them pay
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Paperback, 192 pages
Published 1989 by Lightning (first published May 1st 1986)
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3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,054 ratings  ·  260 reviews


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Carmen
Jan 28, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I was in junior high, I remember constantly checking in at the local stationery store to see if they had the latest Christopher Pike book. His books were so full of suspense, darkness, and psychology, such a dramatic change from the Sweet Valley High and Babysitter Club books I was reading just a few years before. I remember Chain Letter being the most intriguing and sinister of the bunch, although, looking back, the books were pretty scary and disturbing. On second thought, Pike's "Slumber ...more
Ken
Nov 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Alison and her friends have got a secret, one terrible night whilst drunk they hit and killed a man. So when a chain letter signed "Your Caretaker” arrives the group have to take the threat seriously.

Each person is giving a dangerous task to complete as part of their punishment for that awful accident.
They keep getting more and more elaborate.

I really liked the revenge/guilt theme running through the book, admittedly the main idea of teens trying to cover up a killing isn’t entirely original but
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Veronica Morfi
Oct 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Last Summer Alison and her friends got involve in an accident and a man got hurt. They decided to bury this deadly secret deep in their minds and never talk about it again, but someone else knows, he calls himself the Caretaker. He has started a chain letter and for each of them to stay safe they have to do whatever he wishes. With every request Alison will find out things about her friends she never knew, get closer to the boy of her dreams and be forced to face her worst nightmares.

I loved thi
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Peggy
Aug 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Chain Letter was the first book I ever read that really got me excited about reading. I was 13 at the time (some 20ish years ago). I have never forgotten the trip to the grocery store where I happened to see the title of this book and immediately decided I had to have it.

I have (over the years) read EVERY SINGLE Pike title and have over 30 of them still on my bookshelf today. I have read them over and over. Chain Letter will always be my favorite, as it was my first.

Christopher Pike's books nev
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First Second Books

I have never felt more alienated from my 12-year-old self than I did when re-reading this book.
Donna
Jan 01, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
It's drastically better than the last Christopher Pike that I recently reread (Whisper of Death), though this one still has some aspects that my grown-up self objects to.

The plot is "I Know What You Did Last Summer," with an added chain letter element that pushes the guilty teens to act out in self-destructive ways. The pranks are fun if not exactly consistent, and the climactic scene where Alison is chased through her home and empty housing development by the villain is exciting and tense.

I lik
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Anik Sig
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It was a bad book, and I have to say that compared to other horror reads out there, this one was rather tame (and a little boring) compared to them. Maybe the times have changed and the scare factor has increased over the years -- but who am I kidding? The King and Stine books were written around the same time as well and those were infinitely more terrifying. This rehash of "I Know What You Did Last Summer" has several weaknesses that those authors' books don't.

The biggest one would definitely
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PurplyCookie
The story starts out strongly. A group of friends have covered up an accident--or a crime. An ominous person calling himself "The Caretaker" knows all about it. The Caretaker wants each of them to do extremely embarrassing things--or he will kill them one by one. Will the friends stick together or turn on each other? Worse, what if The Caretaker is one of them?

The best part of the novel was the setting of one of the character's homes, a deserted housing tract in the desert. Look at the cover an
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LG (A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions)
Last summer, seven teens from the same high school went to a concert and, for various reasons, ended up riding back together (oh man, that car must have been cramped). They were drunk, rowdy, and stupid and ended up running someone over in the middle of the desert. Although a few of them wanted to talk to the police, in the end they all agreed to just bury the guy and forget about him.

In the book's present, one member of the group, Fran, has just received a creepy chain letter from someone call
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Carrie (brightbeautifulthings)
It’s so much harder to justify the things I love than the things I don’t. I pretty much always know why I don’t like something, but there’s a special magic that goes on in loving things that makes it difficult to quantify. I know, in general, what makes a book good for me: strong characters, clever plots, beautiful writing, representation, empathy, humor, world-building, etc. But a book doesn’t necessarily have to have all those things to strike a chord in me and, even weirder, sometimes books w ...more
Donna
I don’t even know how relevant this even is anymore. Would todays kids know what chain letters are? Do they get passed around through text messages or social media now? Postage need not apply? As someone who’s received and sent actual mail chain letters before this one tickled me something fierce. I FELT it, you know?

Pike likes to up the ante in his books and he doesn’t hold back on my punches, that’s for sure. He gets right down to it in CHAIN LETTER and doesn’t leave anyone behind. Getting a r
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Kris Lugosi
So my wonderful Cousin of awesomeness just gave me a huge tub of all her old YA Christopher Pike books and R.L. Stine Fear Street books. I was hooked on these as a kid and now get to revisit all my old favorites.

That being said, CHAIN LETTER, is not one of my favorites! The plot is damn near the same thing as I Know What You Did Last Summer. Granted, Pike's book came out in 1986, and the movie nine years later, but it was so close the credits should have read "based off the book CHAIN LETTER by
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Sarah Sammis
Nov 08, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: released
I missed Christopher Pike's books when I was a kid. I've only recently started reading them but I like his take on the horror genre. His books are complex enough to be interesting but short enough to only take about a day's worth of reading.

Chain Letters either through the mail (pre internet days) or via email always close with a threat of bad things happening if the chain is broken. Chain Letter follows a group of high school friends who witness those bad things first hand.

Alison and her frien
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Glynnis
Classic Pike.

Favorite Quotes:

"But that's insane!" Brenda protested. She was angry. Fran was shaking. Alison was confused. In a way, they all felt the same."

"Brenda told me she did. And Brenda never lies, usually."

"She says she's not scared, but I'm not sure I believe her. I didn't want us to have a hysterical female's opinion to deal with."

"If I live till I'm thirty, I'll never get over feeling as nauseated as I did then."

"Was I in your wonderful dream? She didn't get a chance to ask. Maybe she
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Wendy
Aug 04, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading this book when I was in grade school and instantly being hooked. Years later I saw "I Know What You Did Last Summer" and thought "Hey, I read a book just like this years ago"! Christopher Pike books were a great introduction to the horror/mystery genre. I had to get each new book he wrote as they came out.

His writing was appropriate for grade school and junior high. I doubt I would love this book as much now as I did then, but I have no doubt that it was Christopher Pike who
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Carahcat
Mar 11, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gosh, this book brings back some memories of the 6th grade. We all passed around one beat up copy. I loved this book. I haven't read it in about 16 or 17 years, so I think I should check it out and see if it's still as good as I remember.
From what I remember this was a really thrilling book. I agree with some of the other reviewers who said it was Christopher Pike's best and scariest book. I don't think any of my scary teen books ever living up to this one.
hayden
Jul 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Definitely better than the Final Friends books. I like how the story is wrapped up here -- I hope the second installment isn't superfluous and actually brings something new to the table.
Kaitlyn F.
I did not get to finish this book but I will still write a review of what I read. The first part of the book is very slow and it doesn't give any suspense to the story. The author doesn't add any clues of what is going to happen next so I found myself getting distracted and lost when I was reading. I read many good reviews on this book so I picked it, but none of the reviews seem to come true from the chapters I read.
03 BaileyB
May 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Chain Letters is a great book to read. After killing a man and burying him in the desert. Alison and her group of friends start to get letters from an anonumous local. realizing these letters are`nt just threats they will actually get hurt if they don`t do what they are told. the group does as much as they can to stay safe. after going through this chain. they find out that some one in the group has been sending these letters. After three friends have been missing and another friend murdered. He ...more
Delaney
Oct 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Chain Letter is a teen fiction book by Christopher Pike and was originally published in 1986. It can more accurately be categorized as teen suspense, as there is drama and suspense as the story advances.

Christopher Pike is the author of the best selling Thirst series. Chain Letter reminded me slightly of the Pretty Little Liars series by Sara Shepard. They both have the plotline focused on a group of high school students who receive threats and tasks from an anonymous, seemingly all-seeing, per
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Alexis
Oct 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A group of teenagers commit an unacceptable crime, and now they will pay for it! Chain letter, is a book about teenagers who do something terrible and swear not to tell, Until someone does find out and holds it against them. Allison is the first to receive the letter from her "Caretaker." She and every other group member must complete the task or face death. The tasks will go more and more horrifying as they put their names in the next column of the letter!
In the book, Chain Letter, the author
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Tatum Johnson
Oct 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yet again, Christopher Pike has created a suspenseful novel that keeps you questioning every characters move. Alison, Brenda, Fran, Tony, Neil, Joan, and Kipp were all just typical teenagers. However, one summer night driving home from a concert they committed an awful crime. They decided to put it behind them and move on with their lives. However, someone, somewhere had a very different idea, and was determined to make them pay for that horrific night.

When Alison got home from school, she rece
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Rozeq
Oct 30, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You know the author has you hooked when he presents the problem in a life threatening manner. That is exactly what Christopher Pike did. Christopher catches the reader right in the first couple of chapters. Fran, Alison, Tony, Neil, Kipp, and Brenda go to a concert. Once they leave, they pass into a dark road, no other car is even heard, and Tony (the driver), hears something be crushed. They stop the car and go back to find a dead body. The friends bury the body 50 steps from the car. Some fri ...more
Miles Jay Oliver
Jun 18, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clever and engaging. This novel is one I recall fondly from my youth, and I'm glad that I decided to bring it with me on vacation as some supplemental beach reading. I'm somewhat surprised the Christopher Pike's name isn't one that has become as recognizable as some of the less impressive and far more popular adult authors. His work is well written and fun to delve into, and many of the evils his characters face are filled with all sorts of unforeseen shades of gray rather than the clear-cut bla ...more
Riley
Jun 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
chain letter was a good book. this book is a mystery. people have said if i liked chained "Chain Letter" to read Lois Duncan's "I Know What You Did Last Summer," involving a hit and run too. Chain Letter was a very good and exciting book.It is about a group of highschoolers that go to a concert. while at the concert they drank a lot. when they leave (drunk driving) they hit a man. He dies and they bury him in a field near the road. School starts and about half way through the year they get a let ...more
Kylie Gieson
Oct 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In the Chain Letter, Christopher Pike writes about a group of kids who had something tragic happen to them the summer before. The book is about the repercussions that come from the choices they made. Some of them believe that they should do something about it, some of them just think they should just hide their feelings. It was easy doing to school when they thought no one besides them knew what happened, but one day Fran got a letter signed by someone named the Caretaker. They spend the book tr ...more
Audrey
Oct 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved this book. Christopher Pike did an excellent job writing this, it was very suspenseful. He was very descriptive, I love how he went into detail about what happened that summer between all of the characters. He also did a wonderful job describing the main characters, it was as if I could almost clearly see them. Another thing that I liked about the book was how he he described the relationships between the friends. Pike reeled me into reading right on the first page. He made it ...more
Aly
Nov 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my first Christopher Pike book and well I was hoping for more. I know this author has been around and a long time and I have heard great things. But this book for me lost me a little. I got the idea of the "caretaker" but I think maybe the story dragged on too long for me. I wanted to find out who the "caretaker" was but I was almost too bored to care once I was done. I will have to try another book from this author before I make a call on whether I would read more from Mr. Pike.
Lea
Jun 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
not the best but hella creepy
Chris Velazquez
May 30, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, this is the third Christopher Pike book I bought when watching people rave about how good a YA author he was, even comparing him to R.L. Stine. All I can say is that something must be seriously wrong with those people, because this is yet another tiresome, annoying book that genuinely put me in a bad mood. It's filled with Pike's usual writer's sins like very stilted, awkward dialogue (including Pike's penchant for having characters talk in one go for so long that it feels like it's minute ...more
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Christopher Pike is the pseudonym of Kevin McFadden. He is a bestselling author of young adult and children's fiction who specializes in the thriller genre.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

McFadden was born in New York but grew up in California where he stills lives in today. A college drop-out, he did factory work, painted houses and programm
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