I havent read the Larten Crepesley ones but I have heard they are a sort of 'middle ground' of gore between Cirque and Demonata. I won't say either way if suitable or not though. (Now wishing I had the no of our school librarian as she'd know!)
I certainly wouldn't recommend the Demonata series for a ten yr old - very early on in the first book a family is found dead with graphic detail about how sliced up their bodies are with heads hanging at funny angles and stuff - even I had the 'wobbles' going to bed after reading it and I LOVE horror books!
Those Barry Hutchisons look good...I've not heard of him before.
My worry really though is that he is so set on reading more Darren Shan, I feel he might reject anything else at all. But I'm not keen on him reading the Demonata books if they are yr 10 ish! MajorDivvy, do you know about the Larten Crepsley ones?
Can't advise on your question assuch but I've read the Daren Shan 'Lord Loss'/Demonata series and can vouch for the fact that they are much more scary and gruesome than the Cirque Du Freak series which I have also read. I'm a TA and do one to one reading with the kids at school - we're allowed to read the Cirque books with yr 7 upwards but the Demonata series is more recommended for year 10 up as has lots of death, murder and gory graphic detail!
Give it up and try something else - there are loads of books out there that he'll enjoy and that's the important message to get across to him. Ask at your local library for advice and maybe try Barry Hutchisons books too, a mix of the humour and the action. Jonathan meres is similar to wimpy kid as well, and James killgore is excellent.
My son is ten and has been reading the Darren Shan series. He has loved them and they have pretty much transformed him into a keen reader (he did like Wimpy Kid books too but not much else had grabbed him). He's finished the Darren Shan (cirque) series and wanted more Darren Shan.
So...looking at some threads on here and other websites, the other Darren Shan's sounded a bit more gruesome, so I suggested he try something else and then go back to Darren Shan. He (reluctantly) agreed (discussed it quite maturely) and I got him Skullduggary Pleasant.
Now, I've never heard anything but good comments about SP and it's got fantastic Amazon reviews. He's seemed to quite like it...about a quarter of the way through. But this evening came and asked me if he could stop reading it because he wasn't very keen, didn't get it etc.
Would you give up and buy more Darren Shan????? Or teach him to press on?