by Harry Behn, H Behn, Greg Couch

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Halloween portrays three trick-or-treaters' moonlit revels.


Halloween portrays three trick-or-treaters' moonlit revels.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Given Couch's (Summer's Vacation) stylish treatment, the 1949 poem that serves as text for this distinctive picture book will occasion a classic case of the shivers. The poem is mostly a scene-setter: "Tonight is the night/ when dead leaves fly/ like witches on switches/ across the sky." In spooky, misty paintings, Couch introduces three trick-or-treaters who gradually lose their courage. Readers will join them in wondering if things are as they seem, as Couch straddles the delicate line between literal and suggestive representation. The children flee, carelessly dropping their masks and candy baskets. By the chilly glow of a colossal moon, monsters approach-and kindly return the lost items. The illustrator's controlled tension and spine-tingling lighting mine the visual story line for maximum impact. Ages 3-7. (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-A skeleton, a witch, and a devil go out to trick-or-treat, but are frightened by every sound they hear and everything they see. Larger-than-life, vivid illustrations bring this simple rhyming verse to life on each haunting spread. A huge smoky-white moon lights the way for the trick-or-treaters seen against a midnight-blue sky as they stand in a mountain of fire-red leaves. A tree looms over them as the moonlit branches look eerily like lightning striking. SPOOKY! A few large-type words on each page will be appealing to younger readers: "Tonight is the night when dead leaves fly/like witches on switches across the sky-." Stunningly colorful and perfect for the season.-Wanda Meyers-Hines, Ridgecrest Elementary School, Huntsville, AL Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
"Tonight is the night / when dead leaves fly / like witches on switches / across the sky . . . " Couch illustrates a brief rhyme from Behn's first collection of poetry for children with shadowy, atmospheric views of a trio of costumed trick-or-treaters, who grow increasingly spooked as ghouls, witches, and eerily glowing jack-o-lanterns rise about them. Young audiences will respond with delighted shivers as the three fetch up in a misty graveyard, where menacing figures beckon-but turn out to be welcoming the newcomers to a party. Leers and grimaces turn to smiles, and after a bit of wild dancing, the relieved trio vanishes into the fog, waving goodbye. A surefire crowd-pleaser, with just the right reading on the fright scale for sharing with more suggestible audiences. (Picture book. 5-7)

Product Details

Publication date:
A Cheshire Studio Book Series
Product dimensions:
8.94(w) x 11.56(h) x 0.35(d)
Age Range:
3 - 7 Years

Meet the Author

Harry Behn (1898-1973) was born in Prescott, Arizona. He attended Stanford University and Harvard University, and worked as a Hollywood scriptwriter and a college professor. He was the founding editor of the Arizona Quarterly, founder of the University of Arizona Press and the Phoenix Little Theatre. He wrote numerous children's novels, several of which he also illustrated, and seven books of verse for young readers.

Sue Stauffacher is a professional journalist and has been writing a children's book review column for 10 years. She lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Greg Couch is the illustrator of many children's books. He has received two Society of Illustrators Silver Medals. He lives in Nyack, New York.

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