The Spooky Box

The Spooky Box

by Mark Gonyea
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

There's a KNOCK at the door.
A box shows up on the front step. A SPOOKY black box. What could be inside?
With fun, dramatic designs, Mark Gonyea shows the scary things that might slither, slice, or slide their way out, from a ton of toads to a bunch of old bones to a robot with laser eyes. When it comes time to open the box, it's up to the reader to

Overview

There's a KNOCK at the door.
A box shows up on the front step. A SPOOKY black box. What could be inside?
With fun, dramatic designs, Mark Gonyea shows the scary things that might slither, slice, or slide their way out, from a ton of toads to a bunch of old bones to a robot with laser eyes. When it comes time to open the box, it's up to the reader to lift the lid!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Using sharp, angular illustrations in a palette of black, white, and a rather unholy shade of yellow, Gonyea builds zingy tension as his worrywart narrator frets about what might be inside a spooky black box that has appeared at the door. “It could be full of bats!” he shouts as a cloud of them emerges. “Or filled with rats!” (two rats peek out of another box, while three crooked tails slink away). Even less threatening options (“It could be a cake”) take on scary dimensions (“I hope it’s not haunted...”). Finally, readers get to open the box (via a flap), and the answer only begets more questions—and possibilities. Funny and original Halloween fun. Ages 4–8. Agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (July)
From the Publisher

“The book leaves an opening for creative storytellers to make more of the bare-bones text and to use the framework for an inventive reading.” —School Library Journal

“Possibilities abound for creative writing or art activities.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Using sharp, angular illustrations in a palette of black, white, and a rather unholy shade of yellow, Gonyea builds zingy tension as his worrywart narrator frets about what might be inside a spooky black box that has appeared at the door.... Funny and original Halloween fun.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

“A limited palette of reds, greens and yellow and simple shapes provide a sharp, contemporary look that will appeal to older children with limited reading skills.” —Kirkus Reviews on A Wish for Elves

“A clean, clear, lighthearted look at the communicative clout of color, contrast, and contour.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review on A Book About Design

“The only current title that effectively deconstructs complex princples of graphic design for children.” —The New York Times Book Review on A Book About Design

Children's Literature - Jill Walton
It is just a black box delivered to your door. But what is in it? Speculations begin. The book’s classic Halloween palette of orange and black demands the contents to be spooky. Traditional suggestions for what the contents contain begin: bats, rats …but maybe it is cake? The box must be opened, the suspense is escalating, and then the box is opened. But does the mystery end? A perfect drama builds in this graphically illustrated book for young children who relish being slightly scared and welcome stories about to the expected and the unknown. It is not an accident that the word “Box” in the title on the cover has a question mark inside the “o.” Teachers and children will enjoy this read, particularly around the end of October. Reviewer: Jill Walton; Ages 3 to 6.
School Library Journal
10/01/2013
K-Gr 2—This picture book uses a simple design of orange and black angular silhouettes to convey an air of mystery. Readers with vivid imaginations can expand the repeated question, "I wonder what's inside?" concerning a box left at the front door. The unseen, unnamed narrator tosses out some suggestions: spiders, snakes, and other spooky items. The one page that has a flap is disappointing with no additional clues revealed. However, the book leaves an opening for creative storytellers to make more of the bare-bones text and to use the framework for an inventive reading.—Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA
Kirkus Reviews
A sophisticated attempt to build suspense and awaken the imagination may ultimately fail to deliver a satisfying conclusion for most readers. A loud knock at the door alerts the narrator that a box has come. It is black; it is "a spooky box." The narrator wonders, "what's inside?" A graphic adventure follows as the text invites readers to speculate on just what might be in the mysterious box. "It could be full of bats! / Or filled with rats!"--or spiders, bones, snakes or a cake. Utilizing a limited palette of starkly contrasting black, white and yellowy orange, Gonyea imagines vivid dark shapes that emerge from the box with creepy intensity. Serpents with white-triangle eyes zigzag across one spread, while a squid unfurls itself from the black square's confines. Then there is a thump that heightens the anticipation. It cannot be candy, but maybe it's a "ton of toads" or a robot "with laser eyes and a kung-fu claw!" If readers are brave enough, they will discover a vertical flap that opens to reveal…"two more spooky boxes!" And so it goes on for another two spreads, never revealing what's in the boxes but asking readers to speculate some more--and disappointing many, who will justifiably feel they've been left hanging. For those pleasantly surprised and inspired by the title's open-endedness, though, possibilities abound for creative writing or art activities. (Picture book. 4-7)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781466844667
Publisher:
Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Publication date:
07/02/2013
Sold by:
Macmillan
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
32
File size:
6 MB
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Mark Gonyea is the author and illustrator of several children's books, including A Book About Design and A Wish for Elves. He lives in Vermont.


Mark Gonyea is the author of A Book About Design: Complicated Doesn’t Make it Good. He honed his skills at the Joe Kubert School of Cartooning and Graphic Art before working briefly as a designer in Manhattan and then settling down in Vermont.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >