Select one of the keywords
Jeoffry's Halloween    by Mary Bryant Bailey & Elizabeth Sayles order for
Jeoffry's Halloween
by Mary Bryant Bailey
Order:  USA  Can
Farrar Straus & Giroux, 2003 (2003)
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

I love the illustrations in this picture book - of Jeoffry, an orange striped farmer's cat who looks nervous and unsure, and the goofy, easily frightened hound who accompanies him. Everything is in shades of soft burnt orange, giving a misty, eerie sensation. The tale is told in verse ... 'In Autumn when the garden's worn, / I hide and seek in shocks of corn.'

Cat and dog slink through a fall country scene with blazing pumpkins, croaking bullfrogs and a gnarly oak tree. Noises - such as the racket made by two raccoons, 'bristly bandits in a brawl' - startle them, but turn out to have innocent explanations. A Goblin and a Witch frighten the dog off, but Jeoffry follows the pair as they 'Trick or treat!' When fear of ghosts and ghouls make the children lose their flashlight, Jeoffry saves the day by leading them out of 'thickets of fright, / whose claws reach out into the night!'

Halloween can be frightening for kids and cats. Jeoffry shares these fears, but notices that many of them are caused by innocuous things and that 'Sometimes, a bat is just a bat.' Enjoy Jeoffry's Halloween for an unusual perspective on the holiday with a nice balance between spooky and reassuring.

Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.

Find more Kids books on our Shelves or in our book Reviews