Favorite Stories to Share at Halloween for Tots Through Tweens
Listen to the wind picking up, snuggle under a blanket, and enjoy sharing these alternately funny and spooky stories about witches, ghosts, monsters, and jack ‘o lanterns. Many of these don’t specifically reference Halloween, which makes them all the better for pulling out all year round when the mood strikes. Here are my pics for spooky books from youngest to oldest ages.
Pete the Cat: Five Little Pumpkins
By James Dean (Ages 2-4)
I’ll forever have a soft spot in my heart for the “Five Little Pumpkins” poem, which my son used to recite to us when he was a preschooler. I only wish this book had been published back then!
Ten Orange Pumpkins
By Stephen Savage (Ages 2-6)
In this delightfully dark Halloween-themed countdown, the reader must look closely to discover the mystery behind how each pumpkin disappears. You can read my full review here.
Happy Halloween, Witch’s Cat!
By Harriet Muncaster (Ages 2-6)
The charming dress-up enthusiast from last year’s I am a Witch’s Cat is back with a familiar conundrum: what costume to sport for Halloween?
Julia’s House for Lost Creatures
By Ben Hatke (Ages 3-7)
In a hybrid picture-comic book, kindhearted Julia’s hospitality gets tested when she invites a gaggle of mythical misfits, from goblins to trolls, to live in her sprawling old Victorian set atop a turtle. You can read my full review here.
By Kristyn Crow & Molly Idle (Ages 4-8)
For ballet lovers and fans of past favorites, like Vampirina Ballerina, comes a zealous zombie girl, who dreams of dancing on the stage—if only her audience can see past her ghoulish appearance.
By Peter Brown (Ages 4-8)
Just because you’re paranoid, doesn’t mean they aren’t out to get you! My kids are obsessed with this highly original picture book about a paranoid bunny and his stalker-carrots, set against a back-and-white (and orange) backdrop reminiscent of film noir. You can read my full review here.
Even Monsters Need Haircuts
By Matthew McElliogott (Ages 4-8)
Every month on the full moon, a little boy slips out to run a secret barber shop for monsters. If there was a prize for Best Surprise Twist You Didn’t See Coming, this book would take it.
Mr. Feet: Trick or Feet!
By Scott McCormick & R.H. Lazzell (Ages 6-10)
The third installment in this laugh-out-loud graphic novel series about a young anthropomorphic cat is set on Halloween, when a surprise blizzard strands the family overnight at an airport. Can an indoor game of zombie tag save Mr. Pants’ favorite holiday? You can read my full review here.
Who’s Haunting the White House?
By Jeff Belanger (Ages 8-13)
I gave this illustrated history book to my son earlier this month—a ghost tour of troubled presidencies and supernatural happenings at the White House—and he and I were immediately hooked. Now, if only we can find someone to let us into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. so we can catch a glimpse of these alleged ghosts ourselves!
The Night Gardener
By Jonathan Auxier (Ages 10-15)
I sung the praises of this novel on this very blog earlier this year, but I can’t think of a more appropriate setting for this hair-raising read than the erie evenings of October. While malevolent hauntings abound, the real payoff lies in the heroism of two ordinary children.
Be sure to check out my blog for lots of upcoming fall children’s titles for a range of ages.