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The Beast from the East is the forty-third book in the original Goosebumps book series. It was first published in 1996 and received a reprint in 2005. In 2017 a reprint of this book emulating the cover design of the original print was included in the Goosebumps Retro Collector's Tins.

The cover illustration depicts a Beast on top of a strange tree surrounded by exotic plants.

Blurb

EVERY BEAST FOR HIMSELF!

Ginger Wald and her identical twin brothers, Nat and Pat, are lost in the woods. No problem. After all, Ginger did go to that stupid nature camp. Still, there's something odd about this part of the woods. The grass is yellow. The bushes are purple. And the trees are like skyscrapers. Then, Ginger and her brothers meet the beasts. They're big blue furry creatures. And they want to play a game. The winners get to live. The losers get eaten...

Plot

Ginger Wald and her family are spending some time camping in a forest. Ginger and her identical twin brothers, Nat and Pat, are told by Mr. Wald to go explore the forest. The kids do this, but they end up getting lost in the woods.

They look for a way back to their family's tent, but they can't seem to find one. At a certain moment, Ginger grabs a yellow stick. This causes yellow sap to ooze onto her hand. Ginger tries to rub the sap off her palm, but the yellow color doesn't come off. A few minutes later, Ginger places her hand on a patch of red moss. Once again, Ginger's hand is stained with the color. Despite these incidents, Ginger continues looking for her parents.

The three kids stop walking when they feel the ground shaking. They initially assume it's an earthquake, but they find that the shaking was caused by a herd of enormous blue-furred creatures with huge gorilla-like faces. Pat tells his sister that they should run, but Ginger says that it would be better to stay quiet. Pat doesn't listen to his sister and starts running away from the creatures. Ginger and Nat follow Pat, but they are caught by the beasts, who are able to speak. One of them touches Ginger in the shoulder and tells her she is "The Beast from the East." The beasts explain that Ginger must tag someone before the sun sets behind the "Gulla Willow", which is a kind of exotic tree. If she cannot, she will be eaten by all the beasts. Ginger and Nat don't want to play the game, but they have no choice.

Fleg, one of the beasts, explains that there are some rules in the "Beast from the East" game that the kids need to know. First, if they step on a Free Lunch Square, which is a square in the forest where the ground is brown, the other beasts are free to eat them. Second, they can only tag someone from their victim's eastern side. Fleg tells the kids various other rules, and the game starts.

Ginger and Nat hide in the woods, but Ginger accidentally touches a blue leaf, and a part of her hand turns blue. Some time later, she is attacked by a group of snakes. Fleg appears and helps Ginger remove the snakes. After this, Fleg leaves, and Nat decides to climb a tree in order to look for beasts to tag. However, he is suddenly attacked by the tree's branches, which are apparently alive. To save her brother, Ginger starts tickling the tree. The tree drops the boy, and the kids run away from the tree.

Nat tells Ginger he saw some beasts behind a giant rock. The two kids locate the rock, but — when they check behind it — the beasts seem to have vanished. Nat touches the rock. This causes the beasts to reappear. The rock turns out to be a Penalty Rock. As a result, Nat has to go to the Penalty Cage and stay there until the end of the game. Ginger is left by herself in the woods. After a short walk, she meets Spork, a beast that is missing one eye. Ginger tags him, but he warns her that she has to tag him from his east-facing side. Ginger suggests that the two could play another game, which distracts him. Ginger takes this opportunity to tag the beast properly.

Ginger runs deep into the woods and finds Pat. Ginger tries to explain the current situation, but he doesn't believe her. Ginger hears a beast growling, and the two siblings try to find a place to hide. The kids meet an animal that looks like a hybrid of a dog and a squirrel, and it tells them that they can hide in the Hiding Cave. They enter the cave, but they soon discover it is full of insects. The kids hear beasts approaching, so they stay in the cave. One of the beasts asks the squirrel-dog if it has seen any humans later. He answers negatively, saying that the humans went the opposite way. The beasts follow the squirrel-dog's directions, allowing Ginger and Pat to leave the Hiding Cave. As the sun begins to set behind the Gulla Willow, the siblings make their way to the tree. Spork appears suddenly and tags Ginger. She argues that the game already ended, but Spork says that — because Fleg didn't announce that the game was over — the tag counts.

Fleg calls an end to the game, and the two siblings are taken to a small clearing. There, they find the rest of the beasts making a big fire. While they prepare to cook Ginger and Pat, Nat appears. He was able to escape the Penalty Cage and has come save his siblings. Sadly, he is caught by two beasts. When Fleg sees Pat and Nat together, he is surprised. He says that the kids did a "Classic Clone". Since only "Level Three" players can perform this move, Fleg assumes that the boys must be at this level. Fleg explains that the kids had been competing against Level One players, which isn't allowed. Fleg apologizes for making the kids play the game, and he lets them go. Fleg even gives the kids directions back to their campsite.

The kids follow Fleg's directions, but they are surprised by a beast. Ginger says that the beast can't tag them since they are Level Three, but the beast reveals that he is also Level Three and tags Ginger.

International releases

Thebeastoftheeast-uk.png Thebeastfromtheeast-persian.jpg
No: 43
Title: The Beast from the East
Country: United Kingdom
Language: English
Release date: August 15, 1997
Publisher: Scholastic
No: N/A
Title: هیولایی که از شرق م آید اثر
Translated title: The Monster That Comes From the East
Country: Iran
Language: Persian
Release date: October 9, 1997
Publisher: Vida
No: 36
Title: Jeux De Monstres
Translated title: Game of Monsters
Country: France
Language: French
Release date: February 12, 1998
Publisher: Bayard Poche
Thebeastfromtheeast-greek.jpg Thebeastfromtheeast-italian.jpg Thebeastfromtheeast-spanish.png
No: 43
Title: ΤΟ ΤΕΡΑΣ ΤΗΣ ΑΝΑΤΟΛΗΣ
Translated title: The Monster of the East
Country: Greece
Language: Greek
Release date: April 1998
Publisher: ΚΕΔΡΟΣ
No: 43
Title: IL Bosco dei Monstri Blu
Translated title: The Forest of Blue Monsters
Country: Italy
Language: Italian
Release date: May 1998
Publisher: Mondadori
No: 41
Title: Salvase Quien Puede
Translated title: Every Man for Himself
Country: Spain
Language: Spanish
Release date: January 17, 2000
Publisher: Ediciones B
The Beast from the East - Danish Cover - De blå bæster.jpg Thebeastfromtheeast-chinese.jpg Thebeastfromtheeast-chinese-2016.jpg
No: 43
Title: De blå bæster
Translated title: The Blue Beasts
Country: Denmark
Language: Danish
Release date: 2002
Publisher: Borgen
No: 38
Title: 妖獸森林
Translated title: Monster Forest
Country: China
Language: Chinese
Release date: May 5, 2005
Publisher: Cite Publishing
No: 36
Country: China
Language: Chinese
Reprint ver.: 2
Release date: August 28, 2016
Publisher: Shang Zhou Publishing

Differences

  • In French version, Ginger is called "Joanna" and Nat is called "Jack".

Gallery

Trivia

  • This book references Teddy Bears' Picnic, and the Game Boy.
    • The 2018 ebook removes the Game Boy reference.
  • The 25th Anniversary Retro Set print changes the statement on page 69 from "A sign above the door read: PENALTY CAGE." to "A sign above the door read: TI RE PX { GE KI ." It also changes the statement on page 31 from "The sign read: GAME IN SEASON." to "The sign read: KE QI MR WI E WS R."
    • These changes are probably due to an error in the OCR scan of the original manuscript.

References in other Goosebumps media

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