Monday, October 29, 2012

Spooky Good Reads for Halloween

by Kris Kahrs

  Gather round Chickens!  The Pen and Ink Blog has compiled a list of spooky good reads for you and the kidlets this Halloween.  So, chuck the candy, pull up a stool, grab a swig of apple cider and read on...


Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley (1992) 

Pre-K and up.  This die cut book is a lot of fun to read to kids.  As you turn the pages, the monster grows piece by piece and as you keep going, the kids get to interactively tell the monster off and it disappears bit by bit. 


Skeleton Hiccups by Margery Cuyler and S.D. Schindler (Aug 9, 2005)

Ages three and up.  You can just imagine the problems of a skeleton with hiccups.  Now imagine how difficult it would be for him trying the various methods of getting rid of the hiccups and you'll have an idea how visually funny this book is!


 The Hallo-wiener by Dav Pilkey (Sep 1, 1999)    

Ages four and up.  Oscar the Dachshund gets a special costume from his mom to wear for Halloween.  One problem -- it a hot dog costume and guess who's supposed to be the wiener that goes inside the bun? By the author of Captain Underpants.


Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler (Aug 25, 2003)

Ages four and up.   A rhyming story of a witch and the friends she picks up as she flies through the night.  Is there room for one more?  You have to read it to find out!


The Halloween Kid by Rhode Montijo (Aug 3, 2010)     

  Ages Kindergarten and up.  Rhode Montijo is the author and illustrator of this superhero story of The Halloween Kid and how he keeps Halloween safe for all.  The retro illustrations are the real treat.



Bone Soup by Cambria Evans (Sep 8, 2008)

Ages 6 and up.  This is the Halloween version of the old tale "Stone Soup".  A story I still tell to my son at night.  In this retelling, Finnigin the always hungry skeleton is looking for his next meal on Halloween and needs to convince the townspeople to share a meal with him.  


Sounds Spooky by Christopher Cheng and Sarah Davis (May 1, 2012)  

 Ages 5 and up.  SCBWI homeboy, Christopher Cheng's book Sounds Spooky is the perfect read for Halloween.  He uses the Onomatopoeia of words to help the reader hear the sound as well as set the tone for the story.



The House With a Clock In Its Walls (Lewis Barnavelt) by John Bellairs and Edward Gorey (Aug 3, 2004)

 Ages 8 and up.  A deliciously chilling tale for the older crowd, John Bellairs writes a couple of different series for this age group that are thrilling but not too scary and that have an upbeat resolution.  At 179 pages, you won't finish reading this to the kids on Halloween, but the good news is that they'll keep coming back night after night asking you to read more.


Vampirina Ballerina by Anne Marie Pace and LeUyen Pham (Aug 7, 2012)    

 Ages two and up.  This is a charming, funny read.  Being a ballerina is every girl's dream, especially so for Vampirina, but this little dancer has the extra challenge of also being one of the undead.


Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds and Peter Brown (Aug 21, 2012)

 Ages 4 and up.  How would you feel if your favorite snack all of a sudden became alive and started stalking you?  That will give you a good idea of what happened to Jasper Rabbit one day while noshing on his crunchy treat.  There's some lovely illustrations you'll enjoy, parodying cinematic classics. Put down the cupcake and back away slowly.  


  1. Sounds like fun picture books. And I love the covers. Thanks for sharing about them.

  2. I want to read Creepy Carrots and Vampirina Ballerina. Sound like my kind of books.
    Read House With A Clock in its Walls and loved it. Read Spooky Sounds too. Fun read.
    Thanks, Kris.

  3. These book would also go well with Chocolate Chip Cookies.

  4. Thanks for the great Halloween book suggestions. It's a fun time of year for spooky and silly Halloween-themed stories.
    Author of Magical Matthew

  5. Sounds like a spooky line up. I agree with the cookie thing, and maybe an apple taffy with some cider. Wishing you all a Boo! Boo! good time.

  6. Nice collection of Halloween books. Thanks for the reviews.

  7. My first lines used to start like this: "Hey baby, whatcha's doing?"
    Slap in the Face


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