In October, families plan costumes and stockpile candy in preparation for Halloween. It's also the perfect time to have something spooky to read on the bedside table. We asked Diane Grenkow, youth librarian at Hardwick's Jeudevine Memorial Library, for some fun and fearsome book recommendations.
By Robert Bright, Ages 4-8
Georgie the ghost has been delighting little ones since the 1940s, and the series' charming illustrations and simple stories stand the test of time. In this installment, the little ghost is too shy to compete in the best costume contest on the town green but earns a prize from the attic mice when he returns home.
Says Grenkow: "Like all classics, this book is read over and over for a reason: kids — and adults — find Georgie enchanting and engaging. A sweet story for the smallest of listeners."
Mercy Watson: Princess in Disguise
by Kate DiCamillo illustrated by Chris Van Dusen, Ages 6-9
A pig in a frilly pink dress and tiara, a Halloween parade, and a hot pursuit make for an odd and entertaining night of trick-or-treating. Like all books in the Mercy Watson series, the night ends with an impressive stack of buttered toast.
Says Grenkow: "Mercy is one of my go-tos for emerging chapter-book readers. The pink pig's adorable antics keep the pages flipping. Little ones in love with dressing up always get a kick out of a pig in costume."
by Mark Kimball Moulton illustrated by Karen H. Good, Ages 7-9
More silly than scary, this fantastically illustrated book serves up fried spider's legs and fresh frogs'-egg soup when three wacky witch sisters host a shindig for clamorous suitors. Ultimately, the sisters decide that a party with guests Jack and Jill O'Lantern and Dracula is more pleasurable than picking mates.
Says Grenkow: "This playful combination of fairy tale and Halloween makes for a holiday story with more than the usual costumes and candy."