7 Children’s Books for Halloween Week

7 Children’s Books for Halloween Week

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Bone Soup (2008)

When a traveling skeleton wanders into a new town during Halloween, he hopes to join all the goblins and ghouls who live there in a great feast, but warned by a witch, the creepy residents won’t share any of their food with Finnigin, frightened by his insatiable appetite. Can the creatures of the town resist the aroma of Finnigin’s soup, stirred by his magic bone and cauldron?

Written and illustrated by the talented Cambria Evans, Bone soup is sure to get everyone in the Halloween mood. The grim watercolor and quirky characters set this work apart, and the unique story really sets it at the top of the pile of Halloween books for children. A splash of scary, a dash of humor, and sprinkling of disgusting “foods”dried mouse droppings, spider eggs, toenail clippings—ensure that Bone Soup has the the ingredients it needs to be served up as the perfect Halloween read.

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Dinosaurs’ Halloween (1988)

An encounter with a trick-or-treater wearing realistic dinosaur costume leads to a Halloween full of surprises for the protagonist. This simple but charming text deals with bullies and illustrates beautifully the feeling of the season.

Liza Donnelly’s name and artwork will most likely look familiar. Donnelly’s work has been featured in many magazines and newspapers including Good House Keeping, Cosmopolitan, Forbes. The list goes on and on, but she is most known for her work in The New Yorker. The art is simple, yet appealing, and great for young children as well as adults. Dinosaurs’s Halloween is just one of the Dinosaurs’ books in a series, which includes Dinosaurs’ Beach, Dinosaurs’ Day, Dinosaurs’ Garden, Dinosaurs’ Valentine, Dinosaurs’ Thanksgiving, and Dinosaurs’ Christmas. As it is out of print, Dinosaurs’ Halloween might prove the most difficult on the list to get a hold of, but the effort will be worth it.

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Halloween Good Night (2010)

Eight different Halloween creatures are showcased in their own individual, beautifully rendered bedrooms, as their parents put them to bed. From Aliens to ghosts to Werewolves, Halloween Goodnight is an exercise of the imagination, and is sure to capture the imaginations of young children.

Even the spine of book will send pleasurable shivers up yours with its beautiful artwork. Doug Cushman is another talented author and illustrator, who exercised both talents for the sake of this book. The ink drawings and watercolor make for a not-so-scary Halloween bedtime story. With the subject matter being different ways monsters say “Good Night” it’s perhaps the best suited on the list to read right before bed. I don’t want to wail on and on about how great the twist at the end is, but it’s a real scream.

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I’m Not Afraid of This Haunted House (2005)

It’s Halloween time and brave Simon Lester Henry Strauss all but drags his scary-cat friends into a haunted house filled with a cast of creepy creatures to prove he isn’t scared of anything. Although his friends are running scared at every turn, every new room, every creak, and every shadow, brave Simon Lester Henry Strauss really seems to be afraid of nothing. But is there truly nothing that scares him?

Teresa Murfin’s illustrations are what really shine about this children’s book. There is a great amount of detail in each of the drawings and they all appear to be quite creepy with a unique and beautiful style. However, without the rhymes of Laurie Friedman’s story and the brave character Simon Lester Henry Strauss it would probably be too scary for kids. Yet with Simon Lester Henry Strauss it is clear that pronouncing his long name is the only thing to be scared of… and maybe one other small thing.

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Scary, Scary Halloween (1988)

Four pairs of eyes stare from the blackness under the porch to watch as fearsome creatures trick-or-treat. A mummy, skeleton, witches, a devil, and more walk by for the four pairs of eyes to watch in fear, in the end revealing themselves when the streets have finally run empty of ghouls and goblins.

Jan Brett’s illustrations in Scary, Scary Halloween are arguably the most detailed in this list. From the bark of the trees to the patch work clothing of Halloween Witches, the details are amazing. Plus it keeps the costumes scary and spooky, not funny and girly. No princesses, transformer robots, or bubble bees in this book, just the good ole traditional costumes. In contrast to the complex and detailed drawings, Eve Bunting’s Scary, Scary Halloween text is the simplest of the stories on the list, but it still captures the feeling of All Hallows Eve very well.

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The Spooky Smells of Halloween (2005)

Sammy and his friends are having one great Halloween. They eat spooky shaped cookies, partake in the classic game of bobbing for apples, and of course go trick-or-treating for other Halloween treats. Best of all The Spooky Smells of Halloween offers opportunities to utilize a much neglected sense: smell.

Great for younger kids. It’s not scary, only fun with the Halloween theme. The illustrations are cute and the smells offer a new dimension to Halloween stories.

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Trick or Treat (2012)

As kindhearted as the more well known Casper (the friendly ghost), Oliver the ghost sends out invitations to his annual Halloween party at his haunted house. To get ready, Oliver sprinkles dust on the furniture, stirs the black cats from their sleep, and welcomes all the spiders hidden in the house. His guests start showing up to his delight, although one envelope has been delivered accidentally to a pair of human trick-or-treaters. How will Oliver handle them? Spook them or show them a good time?

Trick or Treat has an art style similar to Liza Donnelly’s Dinosaurs’ Halloween, but with an even more lighthearted story. The illustrations showcase a particularly clever couple of pages in which Oliver answers his door for guests. Perfect story to prepare for a night of trick-or-treating of for a Halloween party. Thus concludes our list of 7 children’s books for Halloween week.

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