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The Waitress

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Paula has a new waitressing job at the Dog House. It's the place to eat and meet your friends, but beware - even though the food is great the service is deadly. A visit to the Dog House could give you more than an upset stomach, it might just kill you.


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Paula has a new waitressing job at the Dog House. It's the place to eat and meet your friends, but beware - even though the food is great the service is deadly. A visit to the Dog House could give you more than an upset stomach, it might just kill you.

30 review for The Waitress

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kirsty

    When I was 12, this was one of my favourite books. Clearly I was a moron. This book is terrible even by Point Horror standards. Re-read this for the Teenage Scream podcast (lovingly dissecting the best and worst of 90s teen horror). https://soundcloud.com/teenagescream

  2. 5 out of 5

    Paula Brandon

    It's main problem is that it's too short without enough substance! Motivation for the villain was weak sauce, and the boyfriend material was utterly woeful. Otherwise, it's entertaining in a trashy, read-in-one-go sort of way!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Alex (Hey Little Thrifter)

    Paula is the new girl in town, settling in to a new school and starting a part-time job at the local diner. Things don't get off to a good start when she receives the attention of a boy who the popular girl has her sights set on, and she lies to her new boss about her previous waitressing experience. Someone starts to play pranks on her...but who, and why?! I definitely had this one when I was a kid but I had no recollection of the story now. This actually ended up being a pleasant surprise and Paula is the new girl in town, settling in to a new school and starting a part-time job at the local diner. Things don't get off to a good start when she receives the attention of a boy who the popular girl has her sights set on, and she lies to her new boss about her previous waitressing experience. Someone starts to play pranks on her...but who, and why?! I definitely had this one when I was a kid but I had no recollection of the story now. This actually ended up being a pleasant surprise and quite an enjoyable story. It did lose its way towards the end though which ended up being disappointing, but overall it was a fun read.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sati Marie Frost

    I don't even know what to say here. I'm so totally meh about this book. I remember never caring for it, even as a preteen, and I wondered if that had changed. Sometimes my opinion on these books does change - I didn't like The Lifeguard much when I was young, and now I think it's great - but as far as The Waitress goes, I still don't care for it at all. Funnily enough, I can't quite put my finger on the reasons why. It's formulaic, but lots of books are. The characters - including the heroine - I don't even know what to say here. I'm so totally meh about this book. I remember never caring for it, even as a preteen, and I wondered if that had changed. Sometimes my opinion on these books does change - I didn't like The Lifeguard much when I was young, and now I think it's great - but as far as The Waitress goes, I still don't care for it at all. Funnily enough, I can't quite put my finger on the reasons why. It's formulaic, but lots of books are. The characters - including the heroine - are shallow, but again, plenty are. All I can think is that I didn't get any real emotion from it. Basic plot points (because I don't care enough to give more than the basics): Paula is new in town and has a job waitressing at the Dog House, a restaurant owned by Trixie, an eccentric 50-something who still dresses and talks like a teenager. Trixie's niece is the beautiful and bitchy Coralynn, who for some reason has it in for Paula and tries to make her life hell. I think it's over a dude, whose name I believe was Garth. Coralynn likes him and refers to him as her "boyfriend" but he likes Paula and says he and Coralynn only had one or two dates. Typical teen stuff, with added bitchiness. Pranks are played, nothing too serious. Nobody dies. The only person who really gets "attacked" turns out not to have been attacked at all, it was just appendicitis or something. Although one person was killed prior to the events of the book - I forgot about that till just now. The whole thing was just...blah. The reason for the anger and violence (so to speak) was just weak. There's nothing to like about this book, and nothing to hate either - and that almost makes it worse. YMMV, of course. I know some of my sixth-grade friends liked it, back in the day. Me, I'm wondering if Sinclair Smith actually wrote this book, since he / she (I'm not sure if Smith is a man or a woman, and can't find the information online anywhere) is usually pretty good. I was a big fan of Second Sight and The Diary, thought that Dream Date was very inventive, and even The Boy Next Door which I HATE - it scares the pants off me - at least evoked some kind of feeling in me. The Waitress just left me entirely numb. And the annoying thing is that, regardless of any notes I make for myself - in a year or two I won't remember how blah it left me feeling, and will likely read it again. *rolls eyes* Verdict: Meh. Edit Oct 2020: Odd, I liked this a lot more this time round. Maybe because I was reading it as a satire focusing on the rage of the working classes against the entitled freeloaders who leave bad tips. Who knows? 😂

  5. 4 out of 5

    Ken

    Having recently moved to the area Paula applies for a job at Dog House restaurant, shes successful even though she lied about her waitress experience on her resume. Someone at the restaurant takes a disliking to her and soon starts to play a series of pranks, they become more and more extreme in an effort to scare Paula. I found this one to be slightly disappointing, the other characters motivations were weak. Even though it was a shorter than normal Point Horror, it really dragged. Having recently moved to the area Paula applies for a job at Dog House restaurant, she’s successful even though she lied about her waitress experience on her resume. Someone at the restaurant takes a disliking to her and soon starts to play a series of pranks, they become more and more extreme in an effort to scare Paula. I found this one to be slightly disappointing, the other characters motivations were weak. Even though it was a shorter than normal Point Horror, it really dragged.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Elaine Mullane || At Home in Books

    I used to absolutely LOVE the Point Horror books! I would go through each of them in one sitting, for the most part. They definitely tweaked my interested in the horror genre.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Stacy Simpson

    I learned nothing I didnt know already!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Julie_ian_curtis

    this seemed to conclude REALLY fast 31-3-2014

  9. 4 out of 5

    Trisha

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This is definitely one of the worst Point books out there! For one thing it was only 131 pages long, so I guess there wasn't much room for character development...or even plot development! For another, I didn't really like the main character all that much, so I didn't care much what happened to her. Well, I probably would have cared if she died, 'cause that would have been taking it too far. ;) Still, she was kind of annoying and super bitchy as well, even if she sometimes had good reason to This is definitely one of the worst Point books out there! For one thing it was only 131 pages long, so I guess there wasn't much room for character development...or even plot development! For another, I didn't really like the main character all that much, so I didn't care much what happened to her. Well, I probably would have cared if she died, 'cause that would have been taking it too far. ;) Still, she was kind of annoying and super bitchy as well, even if she sometimes had good reason to dislike Coralynn, the resident "bitch". When a chick talks about "getting rid of" another girl "...for good" just because she's going out with the guy she likes, I know she's not my kind of chick. The dialogue was unrealistic for teen fiction, with Paula (the MC) thinking to herself at one point, Drat! I don't know any teenagers who say that word, and I didn't know any back in 1992 either when this book was published. Also, when Garth says, "You were terrific!" to me that didn't sound like a teenaged guy, at least not the teenaged guys I knew. And the one that got me the most was how Virgilia (yep, that's her name...not Virginia...note the ellipses...) and Paula were bitching about Coralynn and they called her...wait for it..."a rat!" Oh wow, what a heinous insult! I know heaps of teens who say, "You're such a rat!" (kidding, I don't and never have) I think the writing improved as the book went on - at the start there were a LOT of ellipses, and there were quite a few throughout the text in general, too. One thing I found confusing was the huge amount of inner dialogue going on with Paula - one paragraph she'd be thinking to herself, but there was no sign of it from use of italics, etc. Then again if italics had been used for this purpose, most of the book would have been in italics, at least in certain parts! One part that made me snort was in their dance class, where we're hearing about how the kids all love their teacher because she's "so pretty and trim". That's a great reason to love a teacher! Her looks! Well, she also "always made the class so much fun," so there was that as well I guess. But mostly it was her looks! After the big reveal of the "bad guy" (Trixie...who I suspected at one point only because I think I remember her being the baddie from the last time I read this book), when she was being super creepy and hiding in Paula's car, and then basically holding Paula hostage before losing her knife and losing all steam too, Paula didn't seem that traumatised. The very next day she was giggling and laughing with her friends about "the rat!" (a fake rat that Trixie put in someone's dinner platter as a joke at her own place of business) Paula remembers to get serious long enough to be sad about the guy that Trixie murdered (before Paula's arrival in town), but after that it's all back to the fun and games and laughter! All in all...when I compare this book to some of my other favourite Point books, there really is no comparison. I don't think I'll ever have to read this one again. ;) It has earned its single star, however, because it's a Point book, and that automatically gives any book a star in my opinion!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Arkham Reviews

    While The Waitress is the first of Sinclair Smith's instalments that I have reviewed so far, my feelings towards it are fairly mixed on the whole. While it's short page count made it an incredibly breezy read, I don't think that I've felt this apathetic towards a Point Horror story so far. It was so formulaic that it neither gripped me nor angered the blood. The plot focuses on Paula as she takes on her first part-time waitressing job after lying about her experience, only to discover that While The Waitress is the first of Sinclair Smith's instalments that I have reviewed so far, my feelings towards it are fairly mixed on the whole. While it's short page count made it an incredibly breezy read, I don't think that I've felt this apathetic towards a Point Horror story so far. It was so formulaic that it neither gripped me nor angered the blood. The plot focuses on Paula as she takes on her first part-time waitressing job after lying about her experience, only to discover that something is right. Mean pranks target certain patrons of the diner and she is blamed, while Paula receives notes and calls from a customer who seems to have it in for her. Naturally, this is balanced by her being bullied by a girl in her class who happens to be the niece of her new boss. Beyond this, The Waitress just failed to be memorable. Although the "pranks" slowly escalate, they stop short of causing lasting damage to anyone and just come across as mildly annoying. It's not until the climax that anyone actively threatens Paula's life and, even then, their motives for doing so are pretty weak. I did not guess who the villain was this time, purely because it made very little sense. The main saving grace of The Waitress was its characters. Unlike some of the other Point Horror authors, Smith actually does a decent job of fleshing out her supporting cast. Although Paula does not know her classmates and co-workers that well, she quickly starts to learn about their motivations as the novel starts to whittle down the list of potential suspects. So, while not the worst Point Horror story, The Waitress is a bit forgettable. Here's hoping that Smith's next instalment is a bit stronger.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Caroline Bennett

    I think this is one of those books you feel fading from your memory the moment you have finished them. Reminds me of: When Monica gets that job in friends where she has to wear fake boobs and a poodle skirt. "It was probably just a practical joke" moment: There were far too many to count. "You probably just imagined it" moment: (view spoiler)[ Being home alone and hearing every noise. Innocent victims?: God forbid teenagers want to move on with their lives and go to college. Stupidest motive ever I think this is one of those books you feel fading from your memory the moment you have finished them. Reminds me of: When Monica gets that job in friends where she has to wear fake boobs and a poodle skirt. "It was probably just a practical joke" moment: There were far too many to count. "You probably just imagined it" moment: (view spoiler)[ Being home alone and hearing every noise. Innocent victims?: God forbid teenagers want to move on with their lives and go to college. Stupidest motive ever for a point horror villain. How blindingly obvious?: I first thought it was Virgilia (Is that a real name by the way?) but then we started to suspect her so I suspected Trixie. The "crazy" villain is such a lazy trope. Ugh. Plot holes / Unfinished plot lines: Could this possibly be the worst mother in Point Horror History?! Where was she? She could have been having Garth over for "sleepovers" and her mum wouldn't have known. Inappropriate happy ending: I really liked the addition of Shep. For some reason I was totally picturing Luke from Gilmore Girls. (hide spoiler)]

  12. 4 out of 5

    Tarina Dee

    Paula McLaughlin is new in town and she manages to bag herself a waitressing job at Trixies Dog House. She thought it would be a great way to make some new friends and earn herself a bit of cash. However, everyone is not as friendly as she hoped and she soon finds herself on the receiving end of some crazy pranks. Question is, who is behind the pranks and why do they have it out for Paula? Well, read it and find out. I like binging on the old Point Horror books when I can and thought this was Paula McLaughlin is new in town and she manages to bag herself a waitressing job at Trixie’s Dog House. She thought it would be a great way to make some new friends and earn herself a bit of cash. However, everyone is not as friendly as she hoped and she soon finds herself on the receiving end of some crazy pranks. Question is, who is behind the pranks and why do they have it out for Paula? Well, read it and find out…. I like binging on the old Point Horror books when I can and thought this was good.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Greer

    Nice little horror book for young readers. Not Young Adults, this is a Scholastic book so there is no slasher fest in this. 1990's story and it reads as such. It jumps to next moments quickly but it has too to stay short and sweet and keep the reader engaged but they are easy to follow you don't get lost. Now for that cover. Really I was surprised by how this cover was so great for a children's horror book. My copy is embossed and very lovely.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Serena

    I was expecting a bit more out of this book but overall its ok and a quick read for those in the mood for YA thrillers. The protagonist got on my nerves at times, however, for being overly naive and not having much of a back bone. But I didnt mind the book it was alright. I was expecting a bit more out of this book but overall it’s ok and a quick read for those in the mood for YA thrillers. The protagonist got on my nerves at times, however, for being overly naive and not having much of a back bone. But I didn’t mind the book it was alright.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    Just terrible. No tension, not fun, and the killer doesn't make any sense. A phoned-in book from start to finishSinclair, I expect better from you! I read this for our podcast Teenage Scream, which dissects the best (and worst) of 90s Teen Horror. https://soundcloud.com/teenagescream Just terrible. No tension, not fun, and the killer doesn't make any sense. A phoned-in book from start to finish—Sinclair, I expect better from you! I read this for our podcast Teenage Scream, which dissects the best (and worst) of 90s Teen Horror. https://soundcloud.com/teenagescream

  16. 4 out of 5

    Macaylamoore

    The main character Paula, moves to a small town in the south, because her mother had just gotten a new job in the area. Paula immediately searches for a job and chooses waitressing at Trixies Dog House. Paulas resume holds a secret message. To NEVER lie on your resume, in this case about Paulas waitressing skills and experience. It may seem like not a big deal but someone with figure it out. Putting the message in like that was very clever on Sinclair Smiths choice. As Paula continues her weeks The main character Paula, moves to a small town in the south, because her mother had just gotten a new job in the area. Paula immediately searches for a job and chooses waitressing at Trixie’s Dog House. Paula’s resume holds a secret message. To NEVER lie on your resume, in this case about Paula’s waitressing skills and experience. It may seem like not a big deal but someone with figure it out. Putting the message in like that was very clever on Sinclair Smith’s choice. As Paula continues her weeks of being the “new kid” and working at TDH, she notices Trixie’s niece, most popular girl in high school, Coralynn following her around and giving her the wrong assignments when Paula would be absent. Paula thought she must be going crazy, Coralynn just “happened” to be there at every corner.Than out of the blue Coralynn invites Paula to come to one of her most popular parties. Paula was shell-shocked, “too good to be true” was dead on. Paula spent all saturday night getting ready and headed over to the party, but once she got inside Coralynn refused to admit she invited her, and made Paula leave in a storm of hurtful words. Paula refused to think about it for awhile until crazy things started happening. Like lights flickering, knives in her waitress outfit (which cuts her finger deep), someone had also put sugar in her car which made it stall in the middle of nowhere. When I first heard the culprit my mouth was open. It was so surprising, but I loved the suspense leading up to it. I also loved how they pulled in a little romance with Paula’s new boyfriend Garth. Which got quite creepy when the culprit was watching them kiss goodnight outside of Trixie’s place.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    Rating: 4 of 5 The Waitress was among the many Point Horror books I read in the early 90s, between the ages of 12 to 15. In those days, when I wasn't buried in a Stephen King novel, nine times out of ten I was reading L.J. Smith, R.L. Stine, Christopher Pike, Caroline B. Cooney, or Richie Tankersley Cusick. Their novels always thrilled and entertained, and yes, there was a healthy dose of jumps and creepies. Nowadays, I'd recommend the Point Horror books for younger 12- to 15-year-olds, who want Rating: 4 of 5 The Waitress was among the many Point Horror books I read in the early 90s, between the ages of 12 to 15. In those days, when I wasn't buried in a Stephen King novel, nine times out of ten I was reading L.J. Smith, R.L. Stine, Christopher Pike, Caroline B. Cooney, or Richie Tankersley Cusick. Their novels always thrilled and entertained, and yes, there was a healthy dose of jumps and creepies. Nowadays, I'd recommend the Point Horror books for younger 12- to 15-year-olds, who want to dip their pinkie toe in the horror pool. (These books will likely fall short for anyone who's already dabbled in adult dark fiction or film.) The horror elements are mild, for the most part, and some of the teenager-y behavior may seem a little outdated. But other than that, these are great fun! Note: My rating is based on what I remember from 20+ years ago and, of course, includes a fair share of sentimentality.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Seth Dorcely

    This book is a good book to read if you like horror. But, this book doesnt really have as much horror as you think it should have. Though the plot of the story of the book is really interesting. The characters in the book is just as annoying as the main character who causes trouble and murders everyone. The main character Paula, is mostly home alone being scared at everything that happens. ill her fear go away, just read the book and find out the horror she has to go through since she is the new This book is a good book to read if you like horror. But, this book doesnt really have as much horror as you think it should have. Though the plot of the story of the book is really interesting. The characters in the book is just as annoying as the main character who causes trouble and murders everyone. The main character Paula, is mostly home alone being scared at everything that happens. ill her fear go away, just read the book and find out the horror she has to go through since she is the new kid in town.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Fulbright

    I'll preface this with the fact that I enjoyed this book; Point thrillers are a guilty pleasure for me, I'll admit it right up front. I read it quickly and without much thought to anything other than being entertained for a bit. This is very much what I call "bubble gum horror" ... teen girl, not really putting things together all that quickly, and not doing as many smart things as she should. Also, there were plot holes you could ride an elephant through. Still, for a quick hour's I'll preface this with the fact that I enjoyed this book; Point thrillers are a guilty pleasure for me, I'll admit it right up front. I read it quickly and without much thought to anything other than being entertained for a bit. This is very much what I call "bubble gum horror" ... teen girl, not really putting things together all that quickly, and not doing as many smart things as she should. Also, there were plot holes you could ride an elephant through. Still, for a quick hour's entertainment, it wasn't terrible. I've certainly read worse.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    This book has charisma. Paula is a have-not working part time as a waitress. She is regularly tormented by popular girl Cordalynn. The other people at the restaurant seem to be oddballs, but Paula gets to know them and like them. But when sinister things start to happen, and when Paula starts to look in on the restaurant's infamous background, she soon finds herself in grave danger.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Fith Purchase

    I think it was a nice book and I'm going to donate it to my teacher.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lynn

    So cheesy. One of the YA books pushed out during the big RL Stine heydey.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Toni N

    Cute little read, reminiscent of my younger days.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    A childhood favorite of mine.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Claudia

    Wow. This book really hooks u in, and gives u a surprise at the end. A great book. I would recommend it to many people.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Gale

    Read in 2006.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

  28. 4 out of 5

    Roselyn

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tamara

  30. 5 out of 5

    Patty Greer

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