Joe Fenton’s What’s Under the Bed? introduces to a cute bespectacled boy named Fred, who would much rather play with toys the go to sleep. After some coaxing, he goes to lie down, but then… what’s that sound? Is there something under the bed? Fred’s imagination runs wild. Perhaps there’s a monster hiding in his room. Is it red? Or green? Fat? Or thin? Does it have sharp teeth? Or long scary nails? What if it’s hungry? Oh dear! We better take a look under there to make sure. There is something under the bed! It’s Fred’s teddy bear! What a relief. If your child has a fear of the dark this book might help put their mind at ease.
I Can Save the Earth! is from the line of “Little Green Books” teaching children about the environment. In this story we’re introduced to Max, a little monster with some bad habits. Max throws his trash anywhere he pleases. He lets his sink overflow, and clogs his toilet with paper. He leaves every light in his house on, until one day there’s a blackout. Max goes outside to see what caused it and discovers how beautiful the earth is. He hadn’t noticed how much he loves the beach, and animals, and playing outside. Max changes his ways to help the earth. He conserves energy, recycles, reduces and reuses. He’s a green monster now, and you can be too!
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak is the story of a mischievous boy named Max, sent to bed without supper. But in his room, a forest grows and the walls give way to jungle and ocean. Max sails to a land of wild things (like himself). The monsters show Max how terrible they can be, but he tames them, and they name him their king. Max commands “let the wild rumpus start!” and he and the other wild things swing and dance and march, until Max remembers how hungry he is. He waves goodbye to his monster friends and sails back to his room, where dinner is there waiting (and still hot too)!
Ghosts in the House is a charming picture book by Kazuno Kohara. The illustrations are all orange, black, and white, making it a perfect read for Halloween! The story begins with a little girl and her cat who’ve gone to live in a nice big house on the edge of town. Unfortunately, the house is haunted! But that’s just fine with this little girl because she happens to be a witch. She’s going to whip this house’s ghosts into shape! Before you know it, she’s caught and cleaned them all, and turned them into linens for her new home. She’s got ghosty curtains, ghosty table cloths, and ghosty blankets for her bed! Ghosts in the House is an adorable story about a girl, a cat, and some ghosts, that all live happily ever after.
Boogie Knights, by Lisa Wheeler and illustrated by Mark Siegel, takes place in a castle on a very special night. When the clock strikes twelve, it’s time for the Madcap Monster Ball! Look who all is invited–the werewolves hustle, the zombies bustle, the mummies mamba, and the serpents samba, and all the while upstairs seven boogie knights (Sir Veillance, Sir Prize, Sir Loin, Sir Round, Sir Cumference, Sir Ender, and Sir Vivor) awaken one by one to the sounds of monsters mashing, bogeys bashing, witches waltzing, and wizards wiggling. The castle’s small prince witnesses it all from the shadows until he meets a ghost princess, and then they join in the fun! You can join too! Groove with goblins, jitterbug with jesters, turn your living room into a veritable discotheque with the help of Boogie Knights!
Zigazak! A Magical Hanukkah Night by Eric A. Kimmel is a story about two devils (who are actually pretty cute) who arrive at a town called Brisk during the Jewish festival of Hanukkah to create some mischief. They peek into the townspeople’s windows. Families are spinning dreidels, frying latkes, and lighting candles. “Zigazak” the devils cry, and suddenly the dreidels sprout arms and legs, the latkes go flying through the kitchen, and fireworks shoot out from the candles! Can Brisk’s Rabbi put a stop to their disruptive pranks? Find out in Zigazak! The book also features charming illustrations by Jon Goodell, and introduces children to the Kabbalistic concept of Tikkun olam which presupposes there are sparks of holiness in everything (even little devils)!