The Boo! Book

Overview

This BOOOOOOk comes with a ghostly surprise.

Everyone has heard of haunted houses. You know, the ones that the mailman crosses the street to avoid. But it turns out that books can be haunted too. Of course all books are full of surprises—but The Boo! Book has a spooky one: A ghost! He rearranges the words, flips the pictures upside down, and waits very patiently for his special version of a surprise ending.
In the spirit of the classic The ...

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Overview

This BOOOOOOk comes with a ghostly surprise.

Everyone has heard of haunted houses. You know, the ones that the mailman crosses the street to avoid. But it turns out that books can be haunted too. Of course all books are full of surprises—but The Boo! Book has a spooky one: A ghost! He rearranges the words, flips the pictures upside down, and waits very patiently for his special version of a surprise ending.
In the spirit of the classic The Monster at the End of this Book, this clever tale features a pop-up ghost encounter and friendly fun for all ages.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Lachenmeyer explains how to handle haunted books (answer: carefully) in a story starring an angelic child with curly hair, whose book is haunted by a pale translucent ghost with a penchant for mischief. Stories and words get turned upside down (“Book ghosts like nothing better than to meddle with stories”), and at one point the child even gets sucked inside the book. Ceccoli’s milky, light-infused illustrations combine plasticine puppets with digital photography and acrylics to a surreal 3-D effect, and a surprise pop-up supplies a gratifying conclusion. Ages 4–8. (Aug.)
USA Today
"Writer Nathaniel Lachenmeyer has noticed the scary fact that the first three letters in book spell boo. He conjures up the idea of a haunted book that's more fun than a haunted house. His book should stir young imaginations and prove that printed text and illustrations, a mixture of acrylics, digital photography and clay puppets, can be as interactive as the flashiest video game. Readers are advised: 'Book ghosts love having books read to them.' The Boo! Book, which has a pop-up surprise on the last page, is perfect for not-too-spooky read-alouds."
From the Publisher
"Lachenmeyer explains how to handle haunted books (answer: carefully) in a story starring an angelic child with curly hair, whose book is haunted by a pale translucent ghost with a penchant for mischief. Stories and words get turned upside down (“Book ghosts like nothing better than to meddle with stories”), and at one point the child even gets sucked inside the book. Ceccoli’s milky, light-infused illustrations combine plasticine puppets with digital photography and acrylics to a surreal 3-D effect, and a surprise pop-up supplies a gratifying conclusion."
Publishers Weekly

"Lachenmeyer's imaginative text is both straightforward and lyrical, keeping the haunting more spookily magical than scary. It's Ceccoli's impressive and intricate illustrations, however, that truly bring this book to ethereal life. Using 'a combination of plasticine puppets, digital photography, Photoshop, and acrylics on paper,' Ceccoli creates an almost three-dimensional, soft-focus world of muted, twilight tones in which horizons are tilted and objects float or turn upside down. The effect is beautifully supernatural rather than creepy, and the blue-gray, cat-eared, rosy-cheeked ghost is appealingly stuffed-animal-like, the only hint of his spectral origins being two tiny fangs. This would make a fine addition to either a Halloween- or book-themed storytime or add a delicious hint of eeriness to a bedtime readaloud."

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"An engaging narrator, together with magical illustrations that often conjure surreal scenes, lets readers in on all there is to know about haunted books and how to be a good owner of one."

Kirkus Reviews

"Lachenmeyer's imaginative text is both straightforward and lyrical, keeping the haunting more spookily magical than scary. It's Ceccoli's impressive and intricate illustrations, however, that truly bring this book to ethereal life. Using 'a combination of plasticine puppets, digital photography, Photoshop, and acrylics on paper,' Ceccoli creates an almost three-dimensional, soft-focus world of muted, twilight tones in which horizons are tilted and objects float or turn upside down. The effect is beautifully supernatural rather than creepy, and the blue-gray, cat-eared, rosy-cheeked ghost is appealingly stuffed-animal-like, the only hint of his spectral origins being two tiny fangs. This would make a fine addition to either a Halloween- or book-themed storytime or add a delicious hint of eeriness to a bedtime readaloud."

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

From the Publisher
"Lachenmeyer explains how to handle haunted books (answer: carefully) in a story starring an angelic child with curly hair, whose book is haunted by a pale translucent ghost with a penchant for mischief. Stories and words get turned upside down (“Book ghosts like nothing better than to meddle with stories”), and at one point the child even gets sucked inside the book. Ceccoli’s milky, light-infused illustrations combine plasticine puppets with digital photography and acrylics to a surreal 3-D effect, and a surprise pop-up supplies a gratifying conclusion."

Publishers Weekly

"Lachenmeyer's imaginative text is both straightforward and lyrical, keeping the haunting more spookily magical than scary. It's Ceccoli's impressive and intricate illustrations, however, that truly bring this book to ethereal life. Using 'a combination of plasticine puppets, digital photography, Photoshop, and acrylics on paper,' Ceccoli creates an almost three-dimensional, soft-focus world of muted, twilight tones in which horizons are tilted and objects float or turn upside down. The effect is beautifully supernatural rather than creepy, and the blue-gray, cat-eared, rosy-cheeked ghost is appealingly stuffed-animal-like, the only hint of his spectral origins being two tiny fangs. This would make a fine addition to either a Halloween- or book-themed storytime or add a delicious hint of eeriness to a bedtime readaloud."

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"An engaging narrator, together with magical illustrations that often conjure surreal scenes, lets readers in on all there is to know about haunted books and how to be a good owner of one."

Kirkus Reviews

"Lachenmeyer's imaginative text is both straightforward and lyrical, keeping the haunting more spookily magical than scary. It's Ceccoli's impressive and intricate illustrations, however, that truly bring this book to ethereal life. Using 'a combination of plasticine puppets, digital photography, Photoshop, and acrylics on paper,' Ceccoli creates an almost three-dimensional, soft-focus world of muted, twilight tones in which horizons are tilted and objects float or turn upside down. The effect is beautifully supernatural rather than creepy, and the blue-gray, cat-eared, rosy-cheeked ghost is appealingly stuffed-animal-like, the only hint of his spectral origins being two tiny fangs. This would make a fine addition to either a Halloween- or book-themed storytime or add a delicious hint of eeriness to a bedtime readaloud."

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Books can be haunted, just like houses. Lachenmeyer explains how to tell if your book is haunted. As you read a story about a girl walking her dog on a sunny day and turn the page, as shown in the upper right-hand corner of the double page, and suddenly the dog is walking the girl in a snowstorm, your book may be haunted. The many crazy things that book ghost can do are demonstrated across the double pages, to the amazement of the young girl reader in the book along with the reader. If you find yourself reading a haunted book, you are warned, you must "...pretend that you are afraid. If you don't, the book ghost will try every trick...to frighten you." There are other warnings, including how not to get trapped in a haunted book, along with instructions on how to get out. The sly humor continues to the surprise pop-up on the last end page. Ceccoli uses a mixed technique including a combination of plasticine puppets and digital photography to create characters that have a squeezable appearance and seem to inhabit a dream world. The illustrations at times depict naturalistic settings while at other times show an array of odd creatures. But not even the story ending pop-up is really frightening; the ghost is too cute. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Kirkus Reviews
An engaging narrator, together with magical illustrations that often conjure surreal scenes, lets readers in on all there is to know about haunted books and how to be a good owner of one. "Everyone has heard of haunted houses," but "not many people know that books can be haunted too." Book ghosts are likely "to meddle with stories and turn them upside down" or occasionally scramble the words on a page. It's important not to offend book ghosts, and their book should not be read "on the anniversary of the day the ghost first took up residence" in it. Readers "who make this mistake get sucked up into the book…." Lachenmeyer's fantastical story comes to life in the artful hands of Ceccoli. Employing a technique that utilizes Plasticine puppets, digital photography and acrylics, she will have readers feeling as though they have entered the book ghosts' deep, watery blue world, full of bubbles and populated by bizarre creatures such as a balloon-headed doll and swimming eyeballs. Children could be either fascinated or unsettled by the story's premise, but few will deny the captivating quality of the pictures. Characters appear to have a lifelike sparkle in their eyes, and the transparent, ice blue ghost comes across as more mischievous than scary. The book ends on an upbeat note and with an unnecessary pop-up. Although much talent is evident in this creative pairing, the result lacks overall appeal for the picture-book crowd; save for children with patience and a taste for the surreal. (Picture book. 4-7)
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—The premise here is that just as there are haunted houses, there are also haunted books. What follows is a list of ways to determine if a book is haunted, followed by instructions for what to do should children find themselves reading one. Much of what transpires is disturbing and some of it is just plain creepy. "If you hold a book up to your ear and hear something that sounds like a ghost trying to hold its breath so you won't hear it breathing… the book is definitely haunted." "Never read a haunted book on the anniversary of the day the ghost first took up residence in the book. Most people who make this mistake get sucked up into the book… and are trapped between its covers forever." The digitally enhanced illustrations featuring clay models are also disturbing. The ghosts themselves are pale blue creatures with tails and sharp, pointy teeth who peer eerily out from between the pages, and the scenes where the youngster has been sucked into the book feature a nightmare world with things like a floating child holding its own head on a string like a balloon. Children who enjoyed Neil Gaiman's Coraline (HarperCollins, 2002) might find this offering to their liking, but the picture-book format would attract considerably younger children, who could conceivably find it frightening.—Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416935131
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 8/7/2012
  • Pages: 46
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Nathaniel Lachenmeyer is also the author of The Origami Master, illustrated by Aki Sogabe, and Broken Beaks, illustrated by Robert R. Ingpen. He has also written nonfiction books for adults. The Boo! Book is his first haunted book, and he lives in a not-haunted house outside of Atlanta.

Nicoletta Ceccoli studied at the State Institute of Art in Urbino, Italy. She was awarded a Silver Medal by the Society of Illustrators in New York, and won the Anderson Prize, honoring her as the best children’s book illustrator in Italy. Nicoletta has illustrated many acclaimed picture books, including The Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum and How the Robin Saved Spring. She lives in San Marino, Italy.

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