by Natali Cavanagh, Marketing Assistant
It’s the most spooktacular time of the year! From the youngest trick-or-treaters to teens in need of a scare, here are 13 of our favorite creepy Halloween-inspired stories:
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: New School Nightmare by Carolyn Nowak
Buffy Summers is just like any other student…except for the part where she’s also a secret vampire slayer. Of course, power doesn’t matter when it comes to eating lunch alone, getting picked on by the popular kids, or having way too much homework. Luckily, Buffy finds her way with a can-do attitude, a weird Watcher, and new besties, Sarafina and Alvaro — who might just have powers of their own. But will any of it be enough to turn the tide when an army of villainous vampires invade town? Read this exciting new middle grade graphic novel, for anyone who likes (or doesn’t like) vampires!
Zip! Zoom! On a Broom! By Teri Sloat, illustrated by Rosalinde Bonnett
One goes zip,
two go zoom.
Three witches glide from room to room.
So begins this witchy counting story. Counting up from 1 to 10 and back down again, ten witches jump on a broom — and then fall off one by one! Written in pitch-perfect rhyme, this fun read-aloud energy will have kids clamoring to read the book again and again.
The Witching Hours: The Vampire Knife by Jack Henseleit
Brother and sister Anna and Max love scary stories, but when they find a mysterious knife on a dark and stormy night, truth becomes stranger than fiction. Dragged into a world of monsters and magic, the siblings must find a way to survive and use their growing knowledge to tackle their next adventure.
Teeth in the Mist by Dawn Kurtagich
Before the birth of time, a monk uncovers the Devil’s Tongue and dares to speak it. The repercussions will be felt for generations… in Teeth in the Mist, three women, centuries apart, will be drawn together by one Unholy Pact. A pact made by a man who, more than a thousand years later, may still be watching. This haunting and captivating young adult mystery is bound to freak you out!
The I’m Not Scared Book by Todd Parr
With his signature blend of playfulness and sensitivity, Todd Parr explores the subject of all things scary and assures readers that all of us are afraid sometimes. Through vibrant illustrations and whimsical, yet heartfelt text, this book is sure to inspire kids everywhere to face their fears and declare, “I’m not scared!”
Swamp Scarefest by B. A. Frade and Stephanie Peters
Goosbumps meets Wayside School in this spooky, funny series! Aidan and Olivia live in a desolate house on the edge of a dirty, swampy lake. Aidan loves to scare his sister and has plenty of funny tricks up his sleeve. But little does he know, Olivia has unwittingly unleashed a swamp monster, courtesy of the Scaremaster, and so the scares that happen during their summer out won’t be pretend… and they won’t be funny! Can Aidan and Olivia outrace and outsmart the monster and the Scaremaster?
Lola Levine and the Halloween Scream by Monica Brown, illustrated by Angela Dominguez
It’s Halloween — Lola’s favorite holiday. She loves pumpkins, scary costumes, monsters, and graveyards — and she likes to scare people too. But when Lola plays a joke on her super best friends, Josh Blot and Bella Benitez, it does not turn out well. Can Lola learn from her mistake and still have a happy Halloween?
Go Away, Big Green Monster by Ed Emberley
Caldecott Award-winner Ed Emberley’s groundbreaking book about mastering fear and emotion through play and imagination has been a bestselling favorite for decades and feels as fresh and innovative today as it did 25 years ago! As kids turn the die-cut pages of this vibrantly illustrated book, they’ll watch the Big Green Monster grow before their very eyes. Then, when they’re ready to show him who’s in charge, they’ll turn the remaining pages and watch him disappear!
The Happy and Heinous Halloween of Classroom 13 by Honest Lee and Matthew J. Gilbert, art by Joelie Dreidemy
It’s Halloween in the 13th Classroom-what could go wrong? Well, for starters, all of the students could magically turn into their COSTUMES! You might think this was hilarious, but it was horrible. With tricky transformations come wild werewolves, voracious vampires, zany zombies, and other moody monsters. As the students of Classroom 13 are about to learn, Halloween’s treats are sometimes tricks.
Cirque du Freak: A Living Nightmare by Darren Shan
A young boy, named Darren Shan, visits a mysterious freak show that leads him on a journey into the dark world of vampires. The vivid detail and original voice will have teens glued to their seats in terror. Filled with grotesque creatures, murderous vampires, and a petrifying ending, Cirque Du Freak will chill, thrill, and leave readers begging for more.
Crankenstein by Samantha Berger, illustrated by Dan Santat
He may look like any ordinary boy, but when faced with a rainy day, a melting popsicle, or an early bedtime, one little boy transforms into a mumbling, grumbling Crankenstein! When Crankenstein meets his match in a fellow Crankenstein, the results could be catastrophic-or they could be just what he needs to brighten his day!
The Very Fairy Princess: A Spooky, Sparkly Halloween by Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton, illustrated by Christine Davenier
Gerry is in search of the PERFECT costume — one that will look just right with her wings and crown. Gerry and her friends are so excited for the big day… until an accidental spill threatens to ruin EVERYTHING! What is a fairy princess to do? Thankfully, Gerry knows just how to save Halloween, and also shows what it means to be a good friend.
Substitute Creature by Chris Gall
The troublemaking students of Ms. Jenkins’s class arrive at school one day to discover a substitute creacher has come to put a stop to their monkey business! He regales them with mind-boggling stories about his former students who didn’t follow the rules. But even this monster’s cautionary tales about the consequences of mischief-making can’t seem to change the students’ wicked ways until he reveals the spookiest and most surprising story of all: his own.