A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books about Autumn and Halloween
Where did the summer go? It’s hard to believe that we’re already thinking about Fall and Halloween. The crop of new books is simply “spooktacular,” and many of our old favorites are sure to make for ghoulish fun. So, enjoy! Happy Haunting ….. and Happy Reading!
At the Old Haunted House by Helen Ketteman, illus. by Nate Wragg
Ketteman, author of Heat Wave, one of our all-time favorites, gives us a Halloween rendition of the classic rhyme “Over in the Meadow.” From goblins to vampires to bats, the creatures increase in number from one to ten. This is a stand-out begging to be read aloud.
Dog and Bear: Tricks and Treats by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
Dog and Bear are back, just in time for Halloween. They prepare costumes, receive trick-or-treaters, and go trick-or-treating themselves. Simple text and illustrations make for a fun book for beginning readers.
Fall Leaves by Loretta Holland, illus. by Elly MacKay
This poetic picture book captures both the art and science of the change in seasons. The ink and photography illustrations are visually appealing. This book can be used on a variety of levels. Instructions for making leaf prints are included.
The Ghosts Go Haunting by Helen Ketteman, illus. by Adam Record
A second book by Ketteman is worth noting. This time the rhythm is that of “The Ants Go Marching” and provides another fun read aloud.
Llama Llama Trick or Treat by Anna Dewdney
In this board book, Dewdney’s Llama Llama is excited over choosing a Halloween costume and going trick-or-treating.
Little Boo by Stephen Wunderli, illus. by Tim Zeltner
A tiny pumpkin seed wants to be scary but must wait until it grows into a pumpkin and Halloween arrives. The life cycle of the pumpkin seed is woven into the story.
Lulu and the Witch Baby by Jane O’Connor, illus. by Bella Sinclair
This beginning reader is a remake, with new illustrations, of the 1986 story by Fancy Nancy author Jane O’Connor. It’s the classic tale about troubles with a younger sibling.
The Monsterator by Keith Graves
Wanting to be something different for Halloween, Edgar Dreadbury visits an unusual costume store where he is “monsterated.” Edgar grows tired of being a monster, but, the shop he visited has disappeared and he is destined to remain a monster forever. The rhyming text is funny and creepy and perfect for reading aloud. The final pages of the book work as a flip toy allowing children to “monsterate” Edgar themselves by selecting different heads, faces, bodies, and feet.
Nightmares! by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller, illus. by Karl Kwasny
This first novel by actor Segel and co-author Miller is a great choice for elementary aged children. Twelve-year-old Charlie believes his stepmother is a witch. He discovers a witches’ portal to the Netherworld which leads to struggle and adventure. This is the first in a proposed trilogy.
Not Very Scary by Carol Bendler, illus. by Greg Pizzoli
This cumulative Halloween tale is bursting at the seams with things that go bump in the night.
Otis and the Scarecrow by Loren Long
This is the fifth Otis book by local author, Loren Long. A lonely scarecrow is treated with kindness by Otis the tractor and the other animals on the farm during a rainstorm.
Ready, Steady, Ghost! By Elizabeth Baguley, illus. by Marion Lindsay
Gilbert, a timid little ghost, searches for a place to haunt. This is a not too scary little ghost story, perfect for the younger set.
Rotten Pumpkin by David M. Schwartz, photos by Dwight Kuhn
This work of nonfiction deals with the decay and decomposition of the jack-o-lantern. The possibilities for scientific exploration are many. The color photographs are sure to gross out the reader!
Shivery Shades of Halloween: A Spooky Book of Colors by Mary McKenna Siddals, illus. by Jimmy Pickering
Colors other than orange and black are connected to Halloween in this fun picture book. The rhyming text and bright illustrations make this an upbeat selection.
The Spooky Box by Mark Gonyea
This graphically designed book employs the reader to use his imagination in determining what’s inside the box. The story calls for interaction.
The Sweetest Witch by Alison McGhee, illus. by Harry Bliss
In this companion title to A Very Brave Witch, Witchling listens as her sister teaches her about humans’ strange Halloween customs. The cartoon-like illustrations by Bliss add to the appeal of the story.
Favorites from the Past
Apples and Pumpkins by Anne Rockwell, illus. by Lizzy Rockwell
Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman, illus. by S.D. Schindler
Bone Dog by Eric Rohmann
Dappled Apples by Jan Carr, illus. by Dorothy Donohue
Ghosts in the House! by Kazuno Kohara
The Hallo-Wiener by Dav Pilkey
The House that Drac Built by Judy Sierra, illus. by Will Hillenbrand
Humbug Witch by Lorna Balian
It’s Pumpkin Time! by Zoe Hall, illus. by Shari Halpern
A Job for Wittilda by Caralyn and Mark Buehner
Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert
The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything by Linda Williams, illus. by Megan Lloyd
Piggie Pie! by Margie Palatini, illus. by Howard Fine
Pumpkin Eye by Denise Fleming
Pumpkin Heads! by Wendell Minor
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
Space Case by Edward Marshall, illus. by James Marshall
Teeny Tiny by Jill Bennett, illus. by Tomie dePaola
Ten Orange Pumpkins: A Counting Book by Stephen Savage
The Widow’s Broom by Chris Van Allsburg