7 stages of scary: Spooky tales for tots to teens

candlewick press halloween books

Contrary as it may seem considering their concern about monsters under their beds and boogeymen in their closets, kids like to be scared. Proof of that lies in their endless appetite for books about things that go Boo! and bump in the night.

All kids. Of all ages. (And even some grown ups, too. You know who you are!)

In light of that, consider scaring your grandkiddos this Halloween season with these (age-appropriate) spooky stories from Candlewick Press—all of which I received free for review... to share with you...:

Ghost in the House

Ghost in the House: A Lift-the-Flap Book written and illustrated by Ammi-Joan Paquette

Hardcover ∙ $9.99 ∙ 20 pages ∙ Ages 3-7

Monsters add up as revealed behind flaps in this new edition of the beloved rhyming book that ends with an unexpected sort of Boo!


Hoot Owl Master of Disguise

Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor, illustrated by Jean Jullien

Hardcover ∙ $15.99 ∙ 48 pages ∙ Ages 3-7

Hoot Owl's big eyes are hard to disguise but his repeated attempts are much of the fun in his quest to capture his next meal.


Francine Poulet Meets the Ghost Raccoon

Francine Poulet Meets the Ghost Raccoon (Tales from Deckawoo Drive, Volume Two) by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Chris Van Dusen

Hardcover ∙ $12.99 ∙ 112 pages ∙ Ages 6-9

Animal Control Officer Francine Poulet loses control when faced with a ghost. Or is it a raccoon? Kids will relate and root for Francine as she faces her fears and does her best to save face.


Magical Mix-Ups: Spells and Surprises

Magical Mix-Ups: Spells and Surprises by Marnie Edwards, illustrated by Leigh Hodgkinson

Paperback ∙ $6.99 ∙ 96 pages ∙ Ages 7-10

A delightful book designed for drawing in. And coloring and writing in, too, to create a sparkly, spell-binding Halloween keepsake story.


The Worst Witch and the Wishing Star

The Worst Witch and the Wishing Star written and illustrated by Jill Murphy

Hardcover ∙ $14.99 ∙ 208 pages ∙ Ages 8-12

Seventh time's a charm! Mildred Hubble muddles her way through the important task of lantern lighting thanks to help from her witchy pals Enid and Maud in this seventh adventure in the series of the clumsy witch and her nemesis Ethel.


Scream Street Flame of the Dragon

Scream Street: Flame of the Dragon by Tommy Donbavand

Paperback ∙ $5.99 ∙ 128 pages ∙ Ages 8-12

Fiendish fun! Underworld residents (and monsters themselves) Luke, Resus, and Cleo battle dragons, trolls, banshees and other bad guys as they continue their quest to save Scream Street. Book No. 13 in the  spooky, successful series.


Wild Boy and the Black Terror

Wild Boy and the Black Terror by Rob Lloyd Jones

Hardcover ∙ $16.99 ∙ 336 pages ∙ Ages 10 and up

A circus freak turned detective and an acrobat—AKA Wild Boy and Clarissa—set out on their second mystery adventure. This time it's to London in 1842, where they battle the Black Terror that's terrorizing and poisoning (and killing!) the city's residents.

Disclosure: I received these books free for review; opinions and summaries are my own.