Sunday, October 7, 2012

Day 25: 9 Halloween Kids Books found at Goodwill

Today I'm going to focus on something a little less geeky, but still Halloween-centric, and definitely from Goodwill. It's a pile of kids' books I bought for Halloween reading with my children. This is NOT a top 10 Books of Halloween list... THAT post is still yet to come. This is just a showcase of books that I have found at Goodwill for the Halloween season. Every single one of these books was picked up for .99 cents a piece. 

The first book is called Pumpkin Day, Pumpkin Night by Anne Rockwell, illustrated by Megan Halsey. This is a nice, autumn-y story about a boy named Jeffrey who knows Fall has arrived and Halloween is on its way as soon as he starts to see pumpkins showing up everywhere. From making paper Jack'O Lanterns at school to making a trip to the local pumpkin patch with all the familiar yearly sights this is a book all about Fall and its traditions, leading up to the night when Jeffrey's Jack'O Lantern is lit and placed on the porch. It's a nice, cozy little book that encourages kids to celebrate Fall. 

See 8 more after the jump!

Next up we have Pumpkin Eye by Denise Fleming, and I Like Pumpkins by Jerry Smath. Pumpkin Eye is much more Halloween oriented than Pumpkin Day, Pumpkin Night, and describes the vantage point of a Jack'O Lantern watching Trick or Treaters going by on Halloween night. The artwork is dark, angular, and filled with the colors of Halloween and seems to be done in chalks or pastels. The text is poetic, and revels in the imagination behind each costume that parades by. 

I Like Pumpkins is one of those grocery store spinner-rack books that you'd probably overlook at full price. But it actually has some fun surprises in store for kids, celebrating all the many places and forms Jack'O Lanterns can be found in around Halloween time. It's cute and entertaining for kids, but maybe a little saccharine for adults. 

Next up are the books Ten Little Mummies by Philip Yates, illustrated by Brian Karas and A Pirate's Tale by Alan Jardine, illustrated by Jimmy Pickering. Neither one of these is a Halloween classic by any stretch of the imagination... but entertaining kids books about Mummies are not hailing down from the sky by any means. Ten Little Mummies is a book that explores all of the dangers that mummified children might face while wandering the sands of Egypt. A Pirate's Tale tells the story of a boy who must save his Grandfather from blood-thirsty pirates. It rhymes. It isn't amazing, but pirate stories are a sort of staple around Halloween in our family... so this is a nice addition to our collection. 

The next pair of books is The Hallo-Wiener by Dav Pilkey and The Teeny Tiny Ghost and the Monster by Kay Winters, illustrated by Lynn Munsinger. Both of these books are about outsiders who are teased by their peers and then end up earning their bragging rights by the end. The Hallo-Wiener is a ridiculously cute book about a dachshund who saves Halloween from a monster that menaces all the other dogs who used to tease him. The Teeny Tiny  Ghost and the Monster is another one that the kids will like, but is so cutesy it may make an adult's teeth ache like a fun-sized Snickers bar. 

Scared Silly! A Book for the Brave by Marc Brown is the penultimate book of this list. It is actually an anthology, collecting (as you can see from the cover) poems by various different poets, riddles, jokes, stories, and more... the "more" being things like Halloween traditions and activities. This one was a pretty great find. Still not really a classic or anything, it contains a ton of short, silly, and occasionally spooky tales for kids. There's even a checklist kids should follow to check their rooms for monsters. This is a genuinely fun book for the Halloween season. 

And finally, a book I want to showcase a bit, caled I'm Looking for a Monster! a pop-up book by Timothy Young. Illustrated in black silhouettes on colorful backgrounds, this book is an exciting addition to any collection of Halloween children's books. Some of my kids' favorite Halloween books are pop-ups, and this one gets a great reaction from them every time. Of course, pop-up books are always a gamble at Goodwill, often showing a lot of damage. I found this book in almost perfect condition, and as you can see from the shots below, the artwork is cool, creepy, and semi-cute in equal measures. 

Some great references to famous monsters in here...

Some of the pop-ups are simple but extremely effective.

Just a fun, mildly Satanic romp for kids!

I will be showcasing a "Best Of" list of kids' books for the Halloween season at some point soon, and honestly, none of these books would make the list, with the possible exception of the last one. These ones are what I think of as "filler" books, since we start reading Halloween books to the kids in mid-September. Books about autumn and fall, and books about generally creepy and spooky things like snakes or pirates always make our list. As a lover of Halloween in general, I can geek out as much about books like I Like Pumpkins just as much as the very creepiest and classic Halloween children's books.

I'll be back soon with more Ghoulish Goodwill Goodies. Until then, Happy Haunting!


  1. Awesome books! I am inspired to collect them as well.

    1. I'm always on the prowl for good Halloween books.

  2. I own Hallo-wiener! lol
    I love that you are showcasing children's books. That last one is amazing and one I would love to have in my collections.
    ~Naila Moon

    1. I looooove children's books if they show good quality, and treat kids like they have half a brain. The children's book section is always a must-stop-and-see location when I hit Goodwill.


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