Only 4 more days ’till Halloween!
A few weeks ago I did a  guest post at Cachey Mama’s Classroom.
It was all about Great Picture Books for Halloween!
For the last few days, I have been getting a lot of requests at school from folks who want suggestions for books to read at children’s parties-either at school or home!
I have never done a repost….but it seems that this one might be relevant!
So here it is….if you have already read this….my apologies….if not…I hope you find it useful!

After all….I do hold the title for Mis-Information
From ghoulies and ghosties
And long-leggedy beasties
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!

~Scottish Saying
From silly to spooky…reading Halloween tales is a great way to get in the spirit of Halloween!
Here are some suggestions for you….they are all available at Amazon but even better…FREE at your library!
Read on for the list!
Let’s Start with stories that are fun but not Scary!
These are great for the littlest goblins!

The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid Of Anything by Linda Williams

This funny tale about an old lady faced with something scary is just spooky enough to qualify as a “scary” book for the little ones.  The plucky old lady finds a clever solution for her dilemma.

Night of the Pumpkinheads by Michael Rosen

 When the Jack-o-lanterns get jealous of  all the kids who get to go trick-or-treating, they decide to dress up themselves a go out themselves….with hilarious and surprising results.
 The photographs of real carved pumpkins are fun to look at and there are even directions for carving your own “Pumpkinhead”. 

 The Hallo-Wiener by Dav Pilkey

This is probably one of my all time favorites!  The sweet little Dachshund in the story is the classic underdog (get it?) with the big heart.  It is fun to see him save the day all the while staying true to being a good friend.  The pictures are hilarious and the hidden humor makes it a fun read for us big kids too!

Arthur’s Halloween by Marc Brown

No Halloween is complete without an Arthur story!  The funny aardvark is always good for a read-a-loud. In this tale, Arthur is finding everything about Halloween scary! Just like many of our little ones, he is not so sure Halloween is really going to be fun.  And….Trick or Treating is the worst-especially going to the big spooky house on the corner!  Like any good Arthur story, he learns a lesson-things are not always what they seem!


Pumpkin Soup by Helen Cooper

This sweet story about friendship is a fun read.  When duck disrupts the harmony of the group by wanting to “be the boss”,  the friends have a fight and duck runs away.  The friends go searching the spooky forest to find their friend.  Everyone realizes that they need to share….and all is well once again.
The illustrations are wonderful and you even get a recipe for pumpkin soup!

The Runaway Pumpkin by Kevin Lewis

You might want to practice reading this one before you try it with your kids… is a bit of a tongue-twister.  The silliness of the huge pumpkin running amok on the farm is just pure fun!  The flavor of the fun family Halloween celebration is charming.   Be sure to note the wonderful costumes that the family members come up with.

Pumpkin Jack by Will Hubbell

I always love when fiction has a bit of non-fiction built in.  This is the story of the life cycle of a pumpkin.  Tim is sad when his wonderful Jack-o-lantern starts to rot….but he watches it through the year and is rewarded with lots of new pumpkins in the end.
Bats at the Library by Brian Lies
The librarian in me loves this wonderful story about what happens when a bunch of bored bats discover an open window at the library and sneak in to discover the wonders to be had there…..During story time the little bats learn to “get lost in favorite stories”!  How fun to see favorite story characters illustrated as bats….a great read!

Trick or Treat, Smell My Feet by Diane de Groat

Author de Groat always writes great holiday school stories.  In this Halloween version,  poor Gilbert finds himself at the school party with his sister’s ballerina costume instead of his own Space Pilot costume….there is just enough silliness with references to underwear and bathrooms to keep everyone laughing…..all turns out well for our hero and he does get to be a Space Pilot for trick or treating.

 Now for some tales for readers who are ready for a little more spookiness!

The Faithful Friend by Robert D. San Souci 
Robert San Souci is a master writer of spookiness.  This Caldecott Honor book is filled with curses and voodoo in a culturally respectful way.    The young heroes in the book find themselves in a frightening situation which tests their friendship….don’t worry though….all works out with a happy ever after ending.  If you are looking for a well crafted and authentic feel for the culture of the French West Indies, this is a great example.

The Hired Hand by Robert San Souci

Another title by San Souci…..a little magic, some trickery, some conniving…all are in this book.  The new hired hand has the ability to make you young again…if you follow the rules….but when the greedy son tries the magic….there are dreadful results.  The hired hand helps the son reform his way and the story comes to a satisfying ending.  

The Hobyahs by Robert San Souci

Have you figured out yet that San Souci is one of my favorite authors at this time of year? He does a masterful job of retelling a classic tale of the  goblins called Hobyahs.  Turpie the dog and his four dog friends try to protect the house, but their noise annoys the old man….so to save themselves they run off to the woods leaving the house unprotected….
A warning…it IS pretty scary when the Hobyahs come and  “tear down the walls, eat the old man and woman, and carry the little girl off in a bag”. 
BUT…the little girl is rescued by her faithful dogs (who gobble up the Hobyahs), and they are safe to go back to the house. –however, about those Hobyahs in the forest–” if they haven’t gone away, they must be living there still”!

The Widow’s Broom by Chris Van Allsburg

This is a great story about the triumph of a good widow and her magic broom.  Chris Van Allsburg masterfully keeps you on the edge of your seat as suspense builds and you try to figure out what happens….oh to be able to tell a story like this….I can’t….but I can read one!

The Graves Family by Patricia Polacco

The Graves family moves into the neighborhood and everyone wonders about their unusual house.  Two neighbor children make friends with them and help them fit in.  This is a lighthearted tale of how there is room for all kinds “even in suburbia”. There are enough Halloween symbols to make this book a great seasonal favorite.
Picnic At Mudsock Meadow by Patricia Polacco
Patricia Polacco has such a wonderful way of telling stories from her childhood.  The Harvest Festival at Mudsock Meadow gives today’s reader a glimpse of long ago Halloween.  There is a bit of science here too…..readers learn about the real phenomenon of FireFox…when William debunks the myth of the ghost of Quicksand Bottoms and wins the heart of his sweetheart.  A fun read….

Babuska Baba Yaga by Patricia Polacco

Yet another treasure from Polacco….a lovely reinterpretation of the traditional Baba Yaga story.  Yes, this Baba Yaga is magical and lives in the forest….but she yearns for granchildren and finds a way to earn the love of a young boy.  The scary scene at the end when the wolves are ready to attack the boy is scary, but the culmination is incredibly moving.  The illustrations in this book are amazing!

This list is by no means complete…and I hope you will add your own favorites to the list.
I checked the library catalogs in my area….all these books are in their collections.
The book photos above are all from….so you can also get the titles there.

Hope this inspires you to give the children in your lives the best Halloween Treat ever….a story!

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