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Halloween Surprise

Halloween Surprise

5.0 1
by Corinne Demas, R. W. Alley (Illustrator)

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What will Lily be for Halloween this year?


What will Lily be for Halloween this year?

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Lily, who first appeared in Valentine Surprise, returns for a homey Halloween. As she tries on costumes, two expressive kitties get dressed up, too. But nothing seems right: a ghost is too scary, a pirate is too mean, a ballerina is too flouncy, and a robot is too bulky. Finally, a flap reveals her “purrfect” costume. Alley’s airy pencil, watercolor, and gouache spreads, rendered in soft autumnal shades, should stir up anticipation for trick-or-treating and provide some costume ideas, too. Ages 3–6. (July)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
Lily has a real dilemma. She does not know what kind of costume to make for Halloween. Ever industrious, she tries out quite a few—ghost (too scary), pirate (too mean), princess (too glittery), pumpkin (too clumsy), robot (too clunky) and those are just a few of the costumes that she creates and discards. All the while her two cats are observing, and obviously enjoying, the process. Lily takes a look at her cats and she gets an idea. The fold-out page at the end of the story shows her final costume and her success at trick-or-treating. The story is truly carried by Alley's illustrations which add detail and humor to the storyline. Lily is a little redhead and the neighborhood is ready for Halloween—decorations are everywhere. A "cute" selection for the younger kids who love Halloween and playing dress up and a chance to learn some wonderful new words which are all printed in bold. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—With Halloween approaching, Lily needs a costume for trick-or-treating, but she can't decide what she wants to be. With her two white kitties looking on, she makes several outfits: ghost, pirate, pumpkin, ballerina, gypsy, princess, and robot. But they are too scary, mean, clumsy, flouncy, jangly, glittery, or bulky. Finally, with inspiration from her pets, Lily comes up with the perfect costume and surprises her dad in a foldout illustration. The soft, orange-hued drawings done in pencil, watercolor, and gouache are appropriate for the season and full of activity as the industrious little girl goes to work. Children will enjoy the Lily's imagination and the reactions of her kittens as she creates several costumes from materials she finds around her house. The just-right size of the book; plentiful white space; and large, clean font make this a good choice for beginning readers. A cheerful addition to Halloween collections.—Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT
Kirkus Reviews

Sweet little Lily's quest to come up with just the right costume is characterized by quietly entertaining do-it-yourself determination.

Unsure what she should be for Halloween, Lily consults her attentive kitties, Fluff and Frisky, as she considers each potential costume. " 'How about a ghost?' / Tooscary!" But her imagination keeps on working. Readers see her try out being a pirate, pumpkin, ballerina, gypsy, princess and robot. Each is unsatisfactory and "too..." something: mean, clumsy, jangly, etc. Here Alley truly enhances the text with full-page pictures that burst with Lily's exuberant musings. Young ones will have fun guessing and chiming in with the crafty little heroine as she deliberates each new idea. Of course, none of these costumes are good enough, and time is running out. Lily looks to her feline friends and "knew just what she wanted to be." Soon she is decked out and ready to surprise Daddy—here the last spread unfolds—"Meow." Cozy, muted colors in watercolor and gouache are given delicate detail with pencil.

As in Demas' earlierValentine Surprise(2008), Lily's plucky dedication to solving her own dilemma reinforces the lesson to keep trying and do your best.(Picture book. 3-6)

Product Details

Walker & Company
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
7.80(w) x 11.40(h) x 0.10(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

CORINNE DEMAS is the author of many popular books for adults and children, including Valentine Surprise and Saying Goodbye to Lulu, which received a starred review in Publishers Weekly and won the ASPCA Henry Bergh award. She is a professor of English at Mount Holyoke College.

R. W. ALLEY has illustrated nearly a hundred books for children, including Valentine Surprise, Tiger Can't Sleep, Cat Skiddoo, and the beloved Paddington series.

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Halloween Surprise 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Sandy27 More than 1 year ago
At last-- a Halloween story that is delightful and inspiring and not the least bit scary! It's wonderful to have another star appearance by Lily, Demas's charming character from Valentine Surprise. The illustrations by R.W. Alley are lively, and the gatefold at the end is a sweet surprise. This is a story that kids will still love long after Halloween is over.