Every year I love to share our favourite Halloween books - I don't quite know what it is about Halloween stories but I just love ...

Halloween Picture Books

Sunday, October 27, 2019 BookBairn 1 Comments

Every year I love to share our favourite Halloween books - I don't quite know what it is about Halloween stories but I just love getting them all out on display and curling up and reading them. Maybe it's the autumnal weather that just makes me want to curl up and read? Maybe it's the glorious black, purple and orange colour combinations? Maybe I like a spooky story? Whatever it is - our Halloween collection is one of my favourites. And I like to add to it every year! So here are some 'new to us' picture books - some of which you will probably have discovered far sooner than us - a bit late to the game with Room on the Broom but nevermind and some of which might be new to you. If you are looking for our previous recommendations you can find them all collated under the 'Spookbairn's Halloween Reads' label!

Dracula Spectacular by Lucy Rowland & Ben Mantle

Sometimes it's hard to fit into the mould that parents, society (or whoever does that moulding) have set out for us. And It's particularly hard to be a Dracula Boy when you're more interested in giggles and glitter and rainbows than black and night and ghastly things. His heart wants all things technicolour but he's a vampire so how can that be? His parents try to teach him how to be a vampire but when he befriends a little girl he's supposed to frighten and she accepts him for who he really is, Dracula Boy's parents realise they have a very special child who needs a different kind of nurture and love. Dracula Spectacular by Lucy Rowland & Ben Mantle is such a lovely heart-warming story about learning to be proud of yourself and about finding friends (and family) who love you just the way you are. With spooks along with sparkles, this is a lovely rhyming story that will show little readers that with good friends and rainbow magic, anything can happen!

A Mischief of Monsters by Lisa & Damien Barlow

I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels like they have a mischief of monsters in their house around Halloween time! This is a perfect first Halloween book or for young toddlers who will like to touch and feel the raised elements of the story. With short rhyming couplets across each double-page spread it shows all the (rather disgusting) things that little monsters get up to! And the joy is in the illustrations - with lovely bright colours and rather sweet-looking monsters, A Mischief of Monsters by Lisa & Damien Barlow is such a lovely monstrous book!

I Love Halloween by Emma Dodd & Giles Andreae

I Love Halloween by Emma Dodd & Giles Andreae is a lovely story to help little ones learn about all the fun things around Halloween and written in delightful rhyme it’s a gentle and cosy read. It’s full of Halloween traditions from making ghost cookies, carving pumpkins, making costumes and going trick or treating. It also shows the little monster (boy) going to bed with his purple penguin toy, who features in all the books, making it perfect for bedtime. We love this whole series (I Love Daddy is my personal favourite) and think that Emma Dodd and Giles Andreae are a brilliant combo!

Monsters Come Out Tonight by Frederick Glasser & Edward Miller

It's not just us human trick or treaters (or guisers if you're in Scotland) that get all dressed up for Halloween. The monsters are getting ready for their big bash too! Monsters Come Out Tonight by Frederick Glasser & Edward Miller is written in delightful rhyme making it such a fun story to read to children. The first time we read it I didn't tell the bairns what was behind each lift-the-flap door and instead had them look for the clues as to whose door they had just knocked on. With clues in the text as well as the illustrations this was great fun and we loved comparing the children in the story's costumes with the real monsters behind the doors. The quirky illustrations are the true treat in this story as they are packed full of details to tickle your funnybones. And the final party scene is just a delight! And the bright orange cover makes it so appealing to little readers to choose off the shelf!

Pick a Pumpkin by Patricia Toht & Jarvis

It seems to be a modern tradition now for Halloween to visit a pumpkin patch to choose pumpkins to carve and decorate. Halloween is also so much more than that: it's also about dangling cobwebs and bats from windows, putting costumes on and venturing past all those spooky Jack O'Lanterns that adorn the doorsteps of our neighbours. This book is a celebration of all that! In Pick a Pumpkin by Patricia Toht & Jarvis, you journey along on a pumpkin picking, carting it home, scooping out the insides, carving a scary face and finally lighting a candle inside! With a lovely warm autumnal feeling, all the lilting rhythmic rhyme, this book captures all the excitement of Halloween. Truly stunning!

Busy Halloween by Louise Forshaw

A new-to-us Halloween book that I couldn't resist picking up from the library is Busy Halloween by Louise Forshaw which is one of the brilliant Busy series from Campbell books! We love the First Stories and the First Explorers series from this publisher and with the same interactive paper mechanisms that they have to push, pull, slide and turn to reveal fun Halloween elements like the Jack O'Lanterns' carved faces or instant change into Halloween costumes, they are just brilliant for little readers. Of course I also love the Halloween colour palette and not-to-spooky scenes in the illustrations! My bairns can't get enough of these mechanisms! 

Leo: A Ghost Story by Mac Barnett & Christian Robinson

Most people cannot see ghosts. But through the magic of Christian Robinson's illustrations you can see them! In Leo: A Ghost Story by Mac Barnett and Christian Robinson, you are invited into the world of the Leo to see with great understanding how difficult life as a ghost really is. It's lonely. And people are truly afraid of you! You hear all the unpleasant things they say about you. So Leo leaves the home where he has spent his whole life, looking for a place where he truly belongs. And so he stumbles upon a little girl called Jane, who can see him! And they play and play and play. And when trouble appears Leo uses his ghostly presence to help. Such a lovely story about loneliness and friendship and imaginary friends and finding a space where you belong. With typical Mac Barnett wit and dark humour this is as much fun for grown ups to read as children! And any listening ghosts of course.

Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler

I don't know how in all my years of reading children's books to classes of children I had not yet read Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. But I hadn't! And both my bairns are absolutely enchanted with it this year. We have read it daily since we got it and we watch the short film animation almost daily too. Written in Julia's impeccable rhyme it's a joy to read aloud and tells the story of a witch who loses her hat, bow and wand, requiring help from a team of friendly creatures to find it, all of whom ask for a space on her broom. And when the broom snaps in two and the witch is chased by a dragon her new team of friends come to the rescue. With fabulous illustrations by the talented Axel Scheffler it's so much fun for children to read and I think we will be enjoying it all year round!

I hope you enjoy reading these at Halloween and whenever you need a good spook! They are fab! If you are looking for more of our very favourite Halloween picture books check out my Amazon shop and click on the section for Halloween.

Happy Halloween Reading! 
Kim and the bairns x

Disclaimer: We were sent some of these books free for review purposes by the publishers, others I bought myself or borrowed from our local library. Words and opinions are my own. If you click on the title or image of the book you will be sent to Amazon using an affiliate link. This means that if you choose to purchase on Amazon, I will receive a small sum (around 20-70p per book) from Amazon at no extra cost to you. I understand that you may not want to use an affiliate link, but if you like reading our blog please just think of it as a small tip for a tip-off to an awesome book. And know that your support means I can buy more books! For more information check out our 'For Our Readers' section.


1 comment:

  1. I love the colourful illustrations in these books. The front covers look amazing. I hope SpookBairn had a great Halloween. I have to confess that I’m not a great fan of the way Halloween has become commercialised and “Americanised” with pumpkins and “trick or treating”. In my day it was turnips and “guising”.