Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Halloween and Spooky Reads

It’s October and before you know it, Halloween will be here.  We’ve been reading Halloween and spooky reads the last few weeks and here are a few I have to share with you today:

Creepy Carrots  by Aaron Reynolds and Peter Brown (Illustrator) is a spooky book for young readers.  The story isn’t just for Halloween and features Jasper a carrot loving bunny.  The book is styled like a graphic novel with sometimes multiple panels on a page.  Many people have been featuring this book lately, I read one review from School Library Journal that mentioned the coloring in the book is mostly black and white with tons of shadows and interesting ‘film angles’.  Add in the little touches of orange focusing your eye throughout the book and you have a nod to Film Noir.  Maybe young readers won’t recognize the homage, but teachers and parents might appreciate the details.  Overall, the book was loved by my 3 yr old Lil Guy.  We’ve been rereading it and going back through to find details in the illustrations.  Highly Recommended to Preschool to Grade 3 who are look for a scary but not too scary book for read alouds, 2-3 grade independent readers, and Halloween readers who like film noir.

Pumpkin Heads by Wendell Minor is a picture book for the youngest of readers.  Each 2 page spread features a beautiful depiction of fall or Halloween with simple text.  This book would be great for a read aloud or for young independent readers.  It’s great to see a children’s book that treats children respectfully, offering a sophisticated view of Autumn.  The sparse text begs for readers to slow down and note the details.  Recommended for readers who want to connect to the natural part of fall.

The Hallo-wiener by Dav Pilkey is a fun picture book with Pilkey’s trademark sense of humor.  The story features Oscar a wiener dog who is miserable and getting picked on at school.  When Halloween comes around, Oscar has the worst possible costume, a hot dog.  Little Oscar becomes a hero when the tables are turned on his bullies.  The book’s illustrations are extremely appealing to K-3 readers.  The overall story is funny and predictable, but it lacks a bit of restraint with the name calling and pranks.  Recommended for a fun and light read before Halloween.

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