“Piano Lessons Can Be Murder” is one of the strangest Goosebumps books ever.
This whole review is spoilers, just so you know.
It starts with Jerry, a boy who is forced to take piano lessons after showing a fascination with the piano in the attic. Mind you, the only reason he showed interest was because he saw a ghost playing it with no hands. His teacher comments on how great his hands are and tries to get them cut off. Turns out, this teacher is a robot and the maintenance man “Mr. Toggle” created him to steal hands so he could robotize them to play music…what? Finally, Jerry escapes and turns his piano lessons into baseball lessons. His coach ends the story by telling Jerry how great his hands are.
OK, this book is a mess. How could a piano teacher kill people and steal hands without anyone noticing or getting him shut down? Why are there ghosts AND robots? Why is everyone obsessed with Jerry’s hands? The pieces don’t add up for me and honestly, it felt really forced to try and appeal to kids.
This one missed the mark for me.
2 out of 5 stars. It feels more infamous than classic.