Biography, Halloween

She Made a Monster: How Mary Shelley Created Frankenstein By Lynn Fulton

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Back of Book:
On a stormy night two hundred years ago, a young woman sat in a dark house and dreamed of her life as a writer. She longed to follow the path her own mother, Mary Wollstonecraft, had started down, but young Mary Shelley had yet to be inspired.

As the night wore on, Mary grew more anxious. The next day was the deadline that her friend, the poet Lord Byron, had set for writing the best ghost story. After much talk of science and the secrets of life, Mary had gone to bed exhausted and frustrated that nothing she could think of was scary enough. But as she drifted off to sleep, she dreamed of a man that was not a man. He was a monster.
My Review:
I received a copy of this book from author Lynn Fulton in exchange for an honest review.
Until this story, I have never read a book that I would consider a Halloween biography story. Lynn has weaved a tale that draws readers into the mind of the famous Mary Shelly. I love that this story focuses on the amazing mind behind Frankenstein’s monster. It allows readers to learn more about the woman who was truly in a league of her own. The illustrations are drawn with dark colors which enhance the spooky aspects of the story. The authors note that shares more about Mary Shelly and her fascinating life. I recommend this book as a great story for book reports and Halloween units.
Ages 6 and up
40 Pages

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Halloween

How to Scare a Ghost by Jean Reagan

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Back of Book:
Who says ghosts get to have all the fun on Halloween? In this humorous new addition to Jean Reagan and Lee Wildish’s bestselling How to… books, the kids are in charge! But in order to scare a ghost, you might have to find one first. Guided by a tongue-in-cheek instructional style, two children show young readers how to set the stage for a spooktacular Halloween by carving pumpkins, playing games, and even reading scary stories. Has a ghost showed up? Great! Now the fun–er, the scaring–can really begin.
My Review:
I received a copy of this story from author Jean Reagan in exchange for an honest review.
I am in love with Jean’s how to books. They never fail to make my students giggle and beg for me to read the story again. I know How to Scare a Ghost will be no exception. The story follows two children as they teach readers how to successfully scare a ghost. The children do everything from making faces, to reading scary books. In the end, the children realize that it is more fun to play with the ghost instead of scare it. Lee once again created illustrations that are bright and engaging. This would be a terrific story to use for a writing prompt as to how students would scare their own ghost. Jean created another fun story that is perfect for the Halloween season.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

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Halloween

Happy Halloween, Stinky Face by Lisa McCourt

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Back of book: Stinky Face is getting ready for Halloween when he has a question–which of course Mama knows the perfect answer to! Even though Stinky Face can think of a million things that could go wrong while trick-or-treating, Mama knows that no matter what happens, he’s going to have the best night ever. That is if he can settle on a costume!
My Review:
This is a perfect story to read around Halloween. Stinky Face is concerned about all things that could go wrong while trick or treating. He shares his concerns about all his friend’s costumes. Lucky for him, he has a wonderful mother who calms all his fears, while helping him pick the perfect outfit. This is a This perfect story to share with first time trick or treaters. I love the soft colorful illustrations and simple text. This is a fun series and the Halloween story is a perfect addition to any class read aloud list.

Ages 5 and up

32 Pages

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Halloween, Monsters

How to Catch a Monster By Adam Wallace

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Back of Book: Get ready to laugh as a young ninja heads into the closet to meet the monster that’s been so scary night after night! But what if things aren’t what they seem and our monster isn’t scary at all? What if our ninja hero is about to make a friend of strangest sort?
If you dare to travel beyond the closet door and into the land of the monsters… you might just find the very best reward of all. But with robots, lava pie, and a smattering of traps―catching monsters is no easy business!
Is there a monster living in your closet? Are you brave enough to catch him? Parents and children will love sharing this fun and inventive picture book, which reminds us that things aren’t always as scary as they seem.
My Review:
I saw this book on a recent trip to Barns and Noble. I am a huge fan of Adam Wallace’s books and I was so excited to see that he came out with a fun book about Monsters. The rhyming text makes it easy for readers to follow along with the story. It also allows the text to be very funny and make readers laugh out loud. The book is a fun look at a sweet monster who simply wanted to play. Boys will love the addition of a ninja who is sneaking around to catch the monster. The illustrations are very cartoonish and child friendly. This is a book that can be read anytime, but is a great read aloud on Halloween.
Ages 5 and up
40 Pages

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Halloween

Mary McScary By R.L. Stine

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Back of Book: Meet Mary McScary. Mary likes to be scary. She scares her mom, her dad, her pets, and even a balloon! But there’s just one person Mary can’t scare — her cousin, Harry McScary. He’s not afraid of the usual things, like spiders, snakes, and other creepy crawlies. But Mary doesn’t give up that easily, and one way or another she’ll find a way to give Harry the scare of his life. . . Beware of Mary McScary!

My Review: RL Stine is a born storyteller. His ability to captivate readers is a true gift. When I saw that this book was on the Barns and Noble National Storytime Pick, I knew I had to read it. The story follows Mary. She is able to scare anyone! We except her cousin Harry. She tries everything! In the end, she tries the one thing that no one else would consider and it works! This is a fun story and a perfect Halloween read aloud. I can see doing writing activities, or reader response with this book. Marc Brown is an amazingly talented illustrator. The pictures are drawn in his unique fashion. He makes the characters in the story come alive across the pages. Overall, a fantastic story.

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Halloween, Uncategorized

Creepy Pair of Underwear! by Aaron Reynolds

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Back of Book: Jasper Rabbit is NOT a little bunny anymore. He’s not afraid of the dark, and he’s not afraid of something as silly as underwear. But when the lights go out, suddenly his new big rabbit underwear glows in the dark. A ghoulish, greenish glow. If Jasper didn’t know any better he’d say his undies were a little, well, creepy. Jasper’s not scared obviously, he’s just done with creepy underwear. But after trying everything to get rid of them, they keep coming back!
My Review: This a perfect picture book to read about Halloween. I love that it is scary story but it isn’t to creepy. I teach younger children, so I tend to stay away from books that will give them nightmares. I love Creepy Pair of Underwear because it is a perfect balance. Jasper Rabbit wants to be all grown up and get the scary faced underwear. He soon realizes that the underwear might be a bit scarier then he originally thought. I think that because the subject of this book is about underwear, it will be an instant favorite, especially with boys. The illustrations are unique in that they are black and white. Only the glowing underwear are a neon green that readers can easily see. This is a book that is a fun read aloud anytime, but especially fun during Halloween.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages.

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Halloween

Monster Trucks By Anika Denise

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Back of Book:
Ready, set, go! The monster truck race is on in this frightfully delightful picture book. On a spooky speedway, Monster Trucks moan! Monster Trucks grumble! Monster Trucks groan!
Join Frankentruck, Zombie Truck, Ghost Truck, and more as they race to the finish line. But one of these trucks isn’t quite who you think.
My Review:
I have talked before about how I love to read fun, none scary Halloween stories to my students. Monster Trucks is an excellent addition to add to my list of read aloud books. It is cute and creative without being scary. The story focuses on several Monster Trucks who are all ready to race. The text is fun, and engaging and keeps readers guessing as to which truck will win the race. The rhyming and flow of the text make it an easy read and one that children will love over and over. The ending has a surprise twist and is very creative. I am looking forward to introducing this story to my students around Halloween.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

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Halloween, Uncategorized

It’s Raining Bats & Frogs By Rebecca Colby

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Back of Book:
A little witch named Delia has been looking forward all year to flying in the annual Witch Parade. When the rumors of rain come true and the other witches start complaining, Delia takes action. Using her best magic, Delia changes the rain to cats and dogs. At first this goes over quite well, but she quickly realizes the animals cause a few issues. She must change the rain again! This time to hats and clogs. And finally, she tries bats and frogs. But each new type of rain brings its own set of problems. How will Delia save the day?
My Review:
This is the kind of fun picture book that should be read on Halloween. I am not a fan of reading scary stories to my Kindergartners. This story talks about the fun that witches are trying to have on Halloween. Children will love the fun mishaps that Delia gets herself into. The illustrations are detailed and will keep young readers busy looking at each page. The ending of the story is well written and allows readers to realize that they need to be careful what they wish for. I can see using this book for a unit study on rhyming as well as metaphors. Perfect read aloud for Halloween.
Ages 5 and up
40 Pages

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