High Variance

Kid Book Review: Halloween Edition

About a week before Halloween, R and I raided the library’s selection of Halloween-appropriate picture books. I’ve felt guilty before about skimming the cream but hopefully sharing what we learned will balance out the karma. Before I start, I know what you’re thinking: “It’s the middle of November! Who cares about Halloween? How about sharing something useful like the top 10 Thanksgiving picture books?” Don’t worry, that’ll be here before Christmas. In the meantime, bookmark this page and put a note on your calendar to check back on October 15, 2013 and then head to your local library. On with the show!

  • Franklin’s Halloween (by Paulette Bourgeois, illustrated by Brenda Clark) Franklin is one of my favorite recurring lovable-yet-flawed characters. He’s just a regular kid (turtle) who usually gets in some sort of minor trouble and learns from his mistakes. He’s kind of messy, not very athletic, and has even been known to tell a fib or two. In this book, he just has fun making his own Halloween costume and going to a party. There’s a great spooky twist at the end and he’s even generous to a sick friend. Hurray for Franklin!

  • Brooms Are for Flying (by Michael Rex) and Humbug Witch (by Lorna Bailin) Spoiler Alert! These two books are simple and cute. One is about a witch who turns out to be a girl at the end and the other is about a girl who turns out to be a witch at the end!

  • The Witch Who Lives Down the Hall (by Donna Guthrie, illustrated by Amy Schwartz) The mostly black and white illustrations (with touches of orange) are a great complement to a story about a boy who lives down the hall from a “strange” lady and her black cat. He’s convinced she’s a witch. Clever and funny to both kids and adults. Reminded me a lot of Mrs. Muffly’s Monster.

  • That Terrible Halloween Night (by James Stevenson) This is about as scary as you can get and still be appropriate for a three year-old. I loved it and R is still talking about it. Last night she told me our basement floor was covered with frogs! I liked the pen and pastel comic book layout too.

  • Cake Girl (by David Lucas) David Lucas is so good–all his books have such sweet characters, surreal stories, and pretty illustrations. This one is about a witch who learns about friendship.