Here are a few picture books that we're enjoying in my house, as we prepare for Halloween:
Pinkalicious: Pink or Treat by Victoria Kann (HarperFestival). We've been taking this little paperback story with us everywhere. When a power outage threatens to cancel trick-or-treating in Pinkville, Pinkalicious must channel supergirl Pinkagirl to save the day. She takes her clever idea to the mayor, and makes her case. This book comes with a page of stickers, which makes it extra-popular with my three-year-old.
Just Say Boo! by Susan Hood (ill. Jen Henry) (HarperCollins). This was one of our favorite picture books last year, and has been brought back into rotation recently. It's about a family that goes out trick-or-treating, and all of the things that seem scary at first, but turn out to be fun. There's a toddler-friendly question and answer refrain, with which the answer is usually "Boo!". My full review is here.
It's Pumpkin Day, Mouse! by Laura Numeroff (ill. Felicia Bond) (Balzer + Bray). This is a board book spin-off to the "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie" series, in which Mouse decorates pumpkins to reflect different emotions (happy, sad, surprised, etc.). Though meant for the youngest of readers ("Mouse paints a happy face on this pumpkin", etc.), my daughter still enjoys going back to this one, because she likes Mouse's antics.
Duck and Goose Find a Pumpkin by Tad Hills (Schwartz & Wade). In this oversized board book, Duck and Goose muddle about looking for a pumpkin (looking in ever-more ridiculous places), until Thistle clues them in to the fact that there is a pumpkin patch. It's typical silly Duck and Goose fun, and still makes my daughter peal with laughter. My full review is here.
Vera's Halloween by Vera Rosenberry (Henry Holt). This is a 2008 title that I had kept, and just introduced to my daughter this week. It's part of a series of books about a young elementary school girl named Vera. In this book, Vera goes trick-or-treating after dark with her father and big sisters for the first time. She gets separated from them, and then a sudden storm leads to a bit of misery. It all turns out safe and cozy in the end, after she happens to knock on the door of a classmate, and the classmate's parents help her. I found some of the details a bit implausible in this one, but my daughter (who very briefly lost track of me at a church function this weekend) loved it. And I did like the subtle message that if something goes wrong, other parents will try to help (as happened with me this weekend).
Splat the Cat: What Was That? by Rob Scotton (HarperFestival). This one is a little paperback lift the flap book in which Splat and his friend Spike visit a haunted house in search of missing mouse Seymour. The house is filled with mysterious and scary sounds, some of which are explained at the end of the book... While she's generally a bit beyond lift-the-flap books, my daughter likes Splat as a character, and has been enjoying this book.
Honorable mention to Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds (ill. Peter Brown) (Simon & Schuster), which I haven't introduced to my daughter yet. Though not directly about Halloween, this is a deliciously creepy picture book in which a greedy young rabbit ends up stalked by carrots. It's quirky, unique, and just a touch scary, with a satisfying ending. My full review is here.