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Halloween House

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Little do two escaped convicts seeking refuge know that they’re about to encounter these werewolves and nine other creepy creatures, all ready for their Halloween haunt. The night is long, and the crack of dawn finds the lawbreakers making a beeline for the safety of their cell. Erica Silverman’s spooks might upset Jon Agee’s cons, but they're sure to enchant all young Halloween lovers. The sparkling verse is matched by pictures that are an irresistible combination of skill and ...

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Overview

Little do two escaped convicts seeking refuge know that they’re about to encounter these werewolves and nine other creepy creatures, all ready for their Halloween haunt. The night is long, and the crack of dawn finds the lawbreakers making a beeline for the safety of their cell. Erica Silverman’s spooks might upset Jon Agee’s cons, but they're sure to enchant all young Halloween lovers. The sparkling verse is matched by pictures that are an irresistible combination of skill and wit.

The Halloween house, occupied by a variety of creatures, including werewolves, witches, bats, and skeletons, turns out to be an unfortunate choice as a hideout for a couple of escaped convicts.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“No booooos for this enjoyable Halloween story—just plenty of giggles.”—The Horn Book Magazine

“A natural candidate for reading aloud . . .”—Kirkus Reviews

“A hilarious spoof of the counting classic Over in the Meadow . . . This is going to be a hit if read aloud or read alone, no matter what time of year.”—The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“The very funny story is matched by hilarious illustrations in a style reminiscent of New Yorker cartoons. This will be a story hour hit all year round.”—Booklist

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In a riff on the counting song "Over in the Meadow," two jailbirds are spooked by bats, witches and other ghoulish characters in a haunted mansion. "A playful rhyming book," said PW. Ages 3-up. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
Kids familiar with the counting rhyme "Over in the Meadow" will surely enjoy this spoof. Two escaped convicts dressed in red stripes have taken refuge on Halloween night in an old house, but it turns out they are not alone. Werewolves, vampires, bats, ghosts, witches and the like seem to be everywhere. The repetitive refrain counts down from ten until morning arrives and all the spooky creatures have disappeared. The convicts have had such a fright that they are only too happy to return to their prison cells.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2--Two escaped convicts, still dressed in striped uniforms, seek to hide in what appears to be an abandoned house. The house, as it turns out, is haunted. The wimpy cons haven't kept track of the calendar, and the night they choose to hide out is none other than October 31st. Using a countdown rhyme that resembles the pattern of "Over in the Meadow," the author spins the tale of a tortuous night for the two fraidy-cat inmates. Howling werewolves, hungry vampires, wriggling worms, swooping bats, booing ghosts, monsters that chase, skeletons that dance, dangling spiders, pouncing cats, and airborne witches in groups of descending numbers do their best to scare the men out of the house. At sunrise, as the cowering cons huddle together in a steamer trunk, the Halloween hooligans vanish. The prisoners flee the house and don't stop until they are back in their cell. One embroiders a sampler that says "Home Sweet Home" and the other is looking over a redecorating magazine. Agee's cartoon-style illustrations, rendered in somber watercolors, reinforce the text by showing the "difficult" circumstances that scared the bad guys straight. A worthy Halloween storytime offering.--Susan Garland, Maynard Public Library, MA
Kirkus Reviews
A natural candidate for reading aloud, this book puts a Halloween twist on a familiar counting rhyme: "In the Halloween house,/in a dark dingy den,/a papa werewolf crouched/with his little ones ten." Silverman (Mrs. Peachtree's Bicycle, 1996, etc.) populates her creaky mansion with tried and true creatures, both natural and supernatural: baby vampires, worms, spiders, witches, monsters, ghosts, young skeletons, bats, etc. With splashy watercolors reminiscent of those in James Stevenson's Grandpa yarns, Agee not only creates a plotline—two escaped convicts spend a terrifying night touring the derelict place before dashing back to their cells—but depicts all the creepies as more cute than frightening, or at least harmless-looking. Children will need little encouragement to imitate the howling, squirming, swooping, "Booooooo"-ing cast, without fear of nightmares when it's time for bed.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312380137
  • Publisher: Square Fish
  • Publication date: 8/19/2008
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD390L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 10.80 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Erica Silverman is the author of the beloved Halloween story Big Pumpkin (illustrated by S. D. Schindler) and other picture books, as well as the Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa series. Her newest book, There Was a Wee Woman . . . , is being published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in Fall 2008. She lives in Los Angeles, California.

Jon Agee is the author and illustrator of many books, including Milo’s Hat Trick, Palindromania! and Terrific, a New York Times Best Illustrated Book. His newest book, Nothing, was just released in Fall 2007. He lives in San Francisco, California.

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