Recommended reading for Halloween

click clack boo

The books recommended below, all recommended by The Horn Book Magazine, were published within the last several years. Grade levels are only suggestions; the individual child is the real criterion. For even more spooky recommended reads, click on the tag Halloween books.   Picture Books Suggested grade level listed with each entry. Click, Clack, Boo! […]

Five questions for Holly Black

Holly Black

Holly Black’s many books for intermediate-level readers (Doll Bones, McElderry, 8–12 years; The Spiderwick Chronicles series with Tony DiTerlizzi, Simon, 8–12 years) and for young adults (the Modern Faerie Tales series, McElderry, 13–16 years; The Good Neighbors graphic novel series, Graphix/Scholastic, 13–16 years; the Curse Workers series, McElderry, 13–16 years) demonstrate various facets of supernatural […]

Horn BOO!

vampire baby

Trick or treat! Enjoy our inaugural selection of new books for Halloween, with reviews written by the Horn Book staff. For more spooky books for middle graders, see “Slightly Spooky Middle-Grade Tales.” Vampire Baby by Kelly Bennett; illus. by Paul Meisel Primary     Candlewick     32 pp. 7/13     978-0-7636-4691-2     $15.99 A boy describes […]

From the Guide: Slightly Spooky Middle-Grade Tales

wednesdays

It’s time for trick-or-treating, costuming-wearing, and embracing all things eerie. In “Horn BOO!” the Horn Book staff recommends spooky (or kooky) offerings, mostly picture books, for celebrating Halloween. The following books about ghosts, hauntings, monsters, and more will all appear in the forthcoming fall 2013 Horn Book Guide. These novels are lightly creepy, gently macabre, […]

Books mentioned in the October 2013 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Holly Black Doll Bones written by Holly Black, illus. by Eliza Wheeler, McElderry, 8–12 years. The Spiderwick Chronicles series written by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi, illus. by Tony DiTerlizzi, Simon, 8–12 years. Modern Faerie Tales series (Tithe, Valiant, and Ironside) by Holly Black, McElderry, 13–16 years. The Good Neighbors series (Kin, […]

More silly than spooky

ten orange pumpkins

Cheery colors, gentle humor, and friendly monsters (or pals in costume!) keep these picture books for the youngest trick-or-treaters light on tricks and heavy on treats. Halloween book meets counting book in Stephen Savage’s Ten Orange Pumpkins. Rhyming text counts down through a mildly “spooky night” as, one by one, nine pumpkins disappear; the last […]

Darkness inside

hideous love

Horror fans rejoice! In addition to plenty of thrills and chills, these four books for teens offer protagonists with complex motives and dark impulses. Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein follows Mary Godwin Shelley’s life from her infatuation with Percy Bysshe Shelley through their scandalous elopement, penury, travels, the writing of […]

Boo! Participation encouraged

spooky friends

An easy reader, a seek-and-find, and two poetry books bring Halloween silliness to early elementary readers. Eager participation is anticipated. “Scarlet and Igor were very good friends. The trouble was, they could never agree on anything,” begins early reader Spooky Friends by Jane Feder. In three brief stories, vampire Scarlet and mummy Igor first argue, […]

Non-gory scary stories

wicked cruel

Many middle graders and middle schoolers like their scary books creepy… but not terrifying. The following titles fit the bill, incorporating some humor, some shivers, and a minimum of gore. The star of John Bemelmans Marciano’s The 9 Lives of Alexander Baddenfield comes from a long line of miscreants (“To say that the Baddenfield family […]

Deck Z

deck z

Chris Pauls and Matt Solomon’s adult novel Deck Z: The Titanic: Unsinkable. Undead. (Chronicle, September 2012) begins in early April, 1912, when German pathologist Theodor Weiss is summoned to Manchuria to investigate what appears to be a particularly virulent strain of plague. Weiss takes a recently infected victim to a laboratory to study the disease, […]