The month of October celebrates one of the most fun times for kids. Between dressing up in costumes and trick-or-treating, the anticipation building up to the last day of the month is great fun. Here are some of the newest books to help celebrate this month along with enjoying reading together as a family. All books are picture books good for ages three through eight unless otherwise indicated. The board books are geared for ages zero to three.
Witch Hazel, by Molly Idle, is a tender reminder of the importance of sharing our family history and the memories that are built over time. Magic happens when Hazel and young Hilda get together. Hazel’s magical broom whisks off the years of memories while Hilda observes them come to life. Are these memories making magic or is the magic making memories? The earth tones found throughout the book made with Prisma-colored pencil reflect a subtle enchanted hue. There’s a foldout surprise found towards the back of the book. And be sure to check out the bewitching end-pages.
Pig the Monster (Pig the Pug), by Aaron Blabey, is newest edition of the hilarious and ever popular Pig the Pug series. Pig is in a frenzy to get as many treats as possible. Throughout this rhyming tale, there will surely be an abundance of laughs. Hungrily drooling, he’d lurch through the streets. A monstrous rampage for TREATS! TREATS! TREATS! The funny bug-eyed pig with his huge pop-out eyes were painted in bright acrylic, pencils and pens. Be sure to check out the laughable end-pages that wrap up the fun mood of the books.
Creepy Crayon!, by Aaron Reynolds and cleverly illustrated with shades of grays and blacks by using pencil on paper by Peter Brown, is the third book in this favorite series featuring Jasper Rabbit. Jasper is despondent. He’s doing poorly on his schoolwork and everything seems to be going poorly. But it all changes when he sees a bright purple crayon by the street. The storyline builds with great foreshadowing intimating gentle tension between Jasper and that annoying crayon. Jasper’s expressions throughout the book display his emotions perfectly. Reynolds manages to balance Jasper’s anxiety with portentous humor. Reynolds won the prestigious Caldecott Honor with Creepy Carrots!
Scary Stories, by Tony Johnston and illustrated by the renowned Tomie DePaola, was originally published in 1978. This book has four short stories compiled with three rascally characters at the helm. A goblin, an imp, and a scalawag are attempting to tell the scariest story possible. What develops from this contest are four delightful and not too scary stories. But beware. The ending is a bit of a surprise. DePaola’s wonderful art is rendered in ink.
Construction on Site Gets a Fright!, by Sherri Duskey Rinker and brightly illustrated on Neocolor wax on oil paper by AG Ford, is a rhyming board book featuring the same endearing trucks and construction site as in the original Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site. It’s a dark and eerie looking night at the construction site. But once you lift scary-looking flaps, you soon see silly images that will make you smile and perhaps even laugh-out-loud! This is the perfect book with a lift-the-flap on every page that will surely calm the jitters of things that go bump in the night.
Boo! Hiss!, by Cyndi Marko, is an early graphic chapter book with all of the elements to get kids excited about reading. A ghost and snake are great friends and adore their old house where they live alone. It all changes when a family moves in and changes their lovely house by painting it and removing favorite items. But everything changes when they begin to really like the family. This delightful story has bright illustrations throughout, made digitally and will hold your six- through eight-year old’s interest to the end.
Eva Evergreen and the Cursed Witch, by Julie Abe along with illustrations sprinkled throughout by Shan Jiang, is a wonderfully magical sequel to the first spellbinding book: Eva Evergreen, Semi-Magical Witch. This second edition proves to be as good as the first book. The storyline about young Eva becoming a novice witch shows that even though she makes mistakes, her loyalty to her family is strong and making the right decision is very important to her. If you haven’t read the first book, what are you waiting for? Here are two great books good for ages eight through twelve. Every chapter has a wonderful etching illustration foretelling what will come.