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Spooks & Scares for the Younger Set
By Martina Bexte, October, 2004

Hey, kids!! Put away your Nintendo, turn off the TV and check out great Halloween reading ... Start with Mary Hill's Creepy Classics with tales by Robert Service (The Cremation of Sam McGee) and W. W. Jacobs (The Monkey's Paw). It even features a short walk-on by Shakespeare's cackling crones! Next, find out if aliens have snatched all the candy in Bailey City in Aliens Don't Carve Jack-O-Lanterns (Bailey School Kids series).

Learn about all kinds of monsters in The Everything Kids' Monsters Book: From Ghosts, Goblins, and Gremlins to Vampires, Werewolves, and Zombies - Puzzles, Games, and Trivia Guaranteed to Keep You Up at Night (Everything Kids Series) by Shannon R. Turlington, Cheryl Kimball & Christel A. Shea. What will Sammy and her friends discover at spooky Bush House while they're out trick-or-treating? Find out in Sammy Keyes & the Skeleton Man by Wendelin Van Draaen. And don't miss horrific adventures around Sunnydale when a hideous scarecrow is set loose in Halloween Rain (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) by Christopher Golden.

Barbara Smith has done some digging and discovered that truth is often scarier than fiction. She offers a trio of chillers. Ghost Riders: True Ghost Stories of Planes, Trains & Automobiles are tales of spirits with an urge to travel. Can pets and animals return from the dead? Find out in Animal Phantoms: True Ghost Stories. And you'll be looking over your shoulder after you read about the scary spirits who live in some of the spookiest houses on Earth in Horribly Haunted Houses: True Ghost Stories.

Let's not forget your little brother or sister. Before the big day arrives, why not read about the real origins of Halloween together. Carol Greene's Story of Halloween offers a 'straightforward and engaging' history of traditions, customs and beliefs that began over two thousand years ago. Next, sing or read along with all the spooks associated with the holiday in Amy Sklansky's Skeleton Bones and Goblin Groans: Poems for Halloween. And W. Nikola-Lisa gives us a hip-hop way for kids and their fairy tale friends to celebrate Halloween in Shake Dem Halloween Bones.

Ever have a costume you weren't too keen on? Dav Pilkey's Hallo-Wiener is the wonderful story of a little dachshund whose mother buys him the most embarrassing Halloween costume ever! Do you want to throw a Halloween party and invite all your friends? Sadler's 101 Spooktacular Party Ideas is filled with all sorts of helpful hints from indoor and outdoor decorating ideas to crafts and party favors. Enjoy all these books and have a Hair Raising Halloween!!
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