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"Case File 13: Zombie Kid" is by J. Scott Savage.

"CASE FILE 13: Zombie Kid," by J. Scott Savage, Harper, 288 pages, $14.99 (f) (ages 8-11)

With just the right amount of spine-tingling action, “Case File 13: Zombie Kid,” by J. Scott Savage, delivers a page-turning read for middle-grade readers. The heroes of the book, Nick, Carter and Angelo, are best friends making it through the sixth grade together.

Their favorite holiday is Halloween, not just for the candy, but also because of a passion to invent intricate costumes. They not only try to top the costumes they made the previous year, they compete with three girls who happen to be in their class and also love Halloween.

When the three friends come up with intricate and realistic zombie costumes, they know it is going to be their best Halloween ever. Then disaster strikes when Nick has to go out of town to Baton Rogue, La., for his great aunt’s funeral. He is going to miss Halloween, trick-or-treating and showing off his costume.

But what Nick discovers in Louisiana, in his aunt’s basement, sends the three friends on an adventure involving zombies, voodoo and black cats. They are in danger and facing heart-stopping scares, but as long as they stick together they can deal with anything.

Savage has put together an engaging and fast-paced novel. And while the boys face some truly terrifying situations, at the heart of the book Savage delivers a tale of friendship and loyalty. He makes great use of tension to move the story along. The book also has witty and intriguing chapter headings that keep the reader wanting to know what happens next.

There is no inappropriate language or situations in “Case File 13,” though it does contain some real scares and tense situations.

His biography says, “J. Scott Savage has been hunting and writing about monsters for as long as he can remember.”

Savage was born in California and currently lives in Utah with his wife and two sons. He is also the author of the middle-grade Farworld fantasy series and has published "The Fourth Nephite" for Mormon teens and the horror/mystery novel "Dark Memories" under the name Jeffery S. Savage.

If you go ...

What: J. Scott Savage book signing

When: Wednesday, Feb. 13, 6:30 p.m.

Where: Barnes and Noble, Jordan Landing, 7157 Plaza Center Drive, West Jordan

Web: barnesandnoble.com

After attending BYU and the University of Utah for five years and not being able to settle on just one major, Connie Lewis decided to be a writer so she could keep studying all things wonderful and new.