For anyone who has marveled at the words and illustrations of Jon Muth (of “Zen Shorts” and “Zen Ties” fame), or for those of us who just can’t resist a giant panda named Stillwater, you’re in luck. Muth has just published his next entry into the Zen series – right in time for Halloween. “Zen Ghosts” follows our same characters, Stillwater, Addy, Michael and Karl as they trick-or-treat for candy and then are treated with scary stories from a mysterious visitor. These books are utterly gorgeous both textually and graphically…and my children just adore them. Happy reading!
No Halloween book list would be complete without “Georgie” by Robert Bright. Written in 1944, Georgie features not only the gentle little ghost from the title, but the wonderfully spooky illustrations by Bright himself. Georgie lives with the Whittakers and provides them with a little ghostly routine of a creaky floorboard and a squeaky parlor door. But when Mr Whittaker decides to fix these, where does that leave Georgie, who really doesn’t want to scare a soul? This vintage Halloween tale has been delighting parents and children for more than 60 years and should take its rightful place on the bookshelves of families for 100 more.
Where else can you find a 700-year old woman, an 800-year old man, a rapscallion, a ghoul and a varmint? Not to mention characters who say things like “Great snakes!” (which, let’s face it, everyone should say now and then…). Look no further than the delightful book, “The Vanishing Pumpkin” by Tony Johnston, illustrated by, none other than, Tomie DePaola. My sons wait all year long to check this book out of the library each October and now my older son loves to read it to his little brother with all the silly voices he can possibly muster. What starts with a missing pumpkin and a hearty desire for pumpkin pie quickly becomes a veritable parade of Halloween misfits and a seriously old wizard. Don’t miss this wonderful Halloween book. (Or I might just have to say “Great snakes!”)