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I remember reading a story when I was young (so 1990's) about a group of kids, possibly middle school or high-school age, that end up traveling to an alternate reality that's in black in white. I believe they end up going to it while they were in school, so they appear in another school on the other side. The kids stand out because they were in color while everything else was in black and white.

Eventually the kids start turning black and white themselves. It also turns out that if they completely turn, they're stuck in this alternate world forever. They end up escaping by finding an item buried in someone's bag (or purse, unsure) that hadn't changed yet and use it to get home.

I remember it feeling sort of Goosebumps-esque, but I looked through the list of books and didn't see it.

I read it in the 90's, possibly very early 2000's. It was an American story and in English. I don't think it was a full-length novel, but might have been shorter like a Goosebump book, but I'm fairly certain it was not in a collection, it was an individual book.

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This is The Haunted School, #59 in the Goosebumps series. From Wikia's description:

While searching for needed materials, they find an elevator that goes sideways and transports them to a classroom in Grayworld, a place where everything is in grayscale (black and white). Here they meet Seth Cortez and his friends, Eddie, Mona, Eloise, and Mary who became a few of the members of the Missing Class of 1947 who have not aged even after all that time.

And the way they escape:

Thalia explained to her friends how she opened her tube of lipstick one day and got excited after discovering that it still had color. She hadn't seen color in so long, she tried to draw on the wall to make colorful pictures. But when her lipstick touched the wall, it made an exit into the real world.

I found this by Googling story kids travel to alternate reality "black and white", which led me to this solved question on another SE.

  • * No acceptance - not solved :D – Gallifreyan Jul 7 '17 at 18:40
  • Ninja'd by 1 minute! Deleting my answer because yours has exactly the same information, plus some. – Shokhet Jul 7 '17 at 18:41
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    I bet ssav is now wondering why they're getting multiple upvotes on a 2-year-old untouched answer :-P – Rand al'Thor Jul 7 '17 at 18:45

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