Menu

Books by Theme

October Stories

Autumn is upon us. Trees turn colors, the air is crisper, and often thoughts turn to things that go bump in the night. Some scary things are imaginary; other monsters just may be real ... With days getting shorter, it’s a terrific time to sit back on a dark evening and share a tale or two.

Quotable Quotes: The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go. -- Dr. Seuss

Boo! / ¡Bu!

By: Leslie Patricelli
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

In this introduction to Halloween for the young, a child and parents choose a pumpkin, carve it, make a costume and then go trick or treating. Patricelli’s signature child is initially fearful of the costumed creatures gathering treats but comes to appreciate it by the end. Humorous illustrations and brief text are ideal to share with first time trick or treaters.

Creepy Pair of Underwear

By: Aaron Reynolds
Illustrated by: Peter Brown
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Jasper Rabbit (first introduced in Creepy Carrots) chooses the neon green underwear rather than the plain white ones. At night, the creepy pair of underwear glows eerily and is downright difficult to discard. But once they’re gone, Jasper decides that he was too hasty. This humorous tale puts a funny spin on what frightens people. 

Duck & Goose, Honk! Quack! Boo!

By: Tad Hills
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Feathered friends Goose, Duck, and Thistle become a super hero, a ghost, and a swamp monster for trick or treating. Though each enjoys Halloween, they must muster up the courage to confront their fears in this gentle, relatable, and ultimately satisfying story.

Halloween ABC

By: Jannie Ho
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

From A to Z, all things Halloween are presented. Beginning with apple (bobbing) all the way to zombie, children will enjoy familiar (and some not so) sights and creatures associated with the autumn celebration each complemented and extended with child-like illustrations  

Hello Autumn!

By: Shelley Rotner
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Lyrical language and handsome color photographs combine to present a portrait of the changes that occur in autumn. Different seeds dance in the wind or twirl to the ground while animals find shelter, hibernate or migrate. Autumn is also a season of celebrations which lead to the “shortest day of the year, and winter…” 

In a Dark, Dark Room and Other Scary Stories

By: Alvin Schwartz
Illustrated by: Victor Rivas
Genre: Fiction, Fairy Tales and Folk Tales
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Spooky, traditional tales retold are presented again with new and mysterious illustrations (reminiscent of Edward Gorey). These stories, drawn from folklore, successfully create a deliciously eerie feeling while remaining perfectly safe. Sources for the tales are included in an afterward by the reteller. 

In the Middle of Fall

By: Kevin Henkes
Illustrated by: Laura Dronzek
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Remember “the middle of Fall, when the leaves have already turned” and the air is chilly, apples and pumpkins are ready to pick. Soon, the leaves will be gone and the sky will change again, filled with snowflakes. Lyrical language and richly hued paintings evoke the season and the changes that accompany it.

The Pomegranate Witch

By: Denise Doyen
Illustrated by: Eliza Wheeler
Genre: Fiction, Poetry
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Atop a hill in an abandoned field was a dilapidated house near a haunted pomegranate tree guarded by a fierce witch. Attempts by village children to snitch a tasty fruit were unsuccessful until Halloween night when a kind old lady replaced the witch. This fast-paced story unfolds in rich, rhyming language accompanied by evocative illustrations.

Thornhill

By: Pam Smy
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Parallel stories of two girls who lived in different times converge at a place called Thornhill. One is told only in ominous black/white illustrations, the other in a text narrative. The result is an evocative, often downright spooky novel (likely to appeal to fans of Brian Selznick’s Hugo Cabret et al).

What Makes a Monster? Discovering the World's Scariest Creatures

By: Jess Keating
Illustrated by: David DeGrand
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Photographs and factual information combine with comical illustrations and lighthearted (though accurate) asides about a range of creatures. Some are familiar, others are not, but all are fascinating and expand the concept of what makes a monster – including humans! 

Proceeds from the sale of books purchased at Amazon.com help support the Reading Rockets project. Thank you!

Sign up for our free newsletters about reading

 

Summer Reading Tips to Go! Delivered to your mobile phone in English or Spanish. Sign up today!

 

Our Literacy Blogs

Maria Salvadore
Maria Salvadore
December 12, 2017
Book Life
Rachael Walker

Start with a Book: Read. Talk. Explore.

"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." — Groucho Marx