I’ve always loved Halloween, not only for the obvious reasons of spooky fun and abundance of candy, but for the costumes, parties, and Halloween themed parks. I’m a sucker for a good scare. Over the past five years, I’ve brought the Halloween spirit into our house with my window monster tradition, adding a new paper cut-out ghoul or beast each year. (Check out my Instagram for this year’s edition). Although my love for Halloween just about spans my lifetime, I’ve only recently begun discovering spooky Halloween picture books.
Several creepy classics come to mind, but my current favorite is Monster & Son by David LaRochelle, illustrated by Joey Chou. If you’re ever in the Eagle Rock area of L.A., stop by Leanna Lin’s Wonderland, an art and gift shop where I find my gifts and unique picture books like this one. Local artists like illustrator, Joey Chou, contribute to the art shows from time to time, so it’s a pretty fun place to check out.
Back to Monster and Son- this book is a recent addition to my collection, not only because I’m a big fan of Chou’s, but it’s a more light-hearted take on the monster book, making it perfect for younger kids. Monster and Son shows the heart-warming relationship between a monster and its son, written in fun and minimal rhyme by LaRochelle, making it a delightful bedtime story as well.
Art and the Fun Stuff
Chou’s variety of monsters, from King Kong to skeletons and swamp monsters are just the right amount of scary and adorable. The artwork was created digitally, and Chou uses this medium to his advantage, working with different textures and color palettes to create each monster world. Chou’s signature style is a refreshing take on picture book illustration, with added patterns and angular shapes to really draw your eye in. The appearance of tiny human beings in the monster world is especially fun to look for too.
Kids will love it because…
…it’s such a fun and colorful monster book. Monster and Son is the perfect Halloween book for those looking for an entertaining monster book without the big scare factor. These friendly creatures might even inspire a drawing-fest for your little monsters. I know I’ll be looking here for inspiration for next year’s window monster friends.
You can find out more about David LaRochelle and Joey Chou in the links below:
Halloween is always a good excuse for creativity at my house. Each costume is conceived and created by the kids themselves.
Now that my kids are older, they make their costumes with very little help from me. My 12 year old daughter, Naomi, made a diction-fairy costume with the help of a $1 dictionary, poster board and a glue gun.
I've never been thrilled about the candy part of Halloween, so when I saw author Julie Falatko's post on Facebook about her Halloween tradition to hand out books, I immediately started planning my own reading and treating!
Our local library had a book sale a couple of weeks ago and I scored 175 board books, picture books, chapter books, MG novels and YA novels. My little diction fairy is going to let kids choose whatever book they want and I'm going to watch and
wait. Julie said the kids in her neighborhood were thrilled! I can't wait to see what happens here in Andover, MA. Will the kids be disappointed? Will the kids be excited to choose a book even when it's unexpected? Will my kids feel embarrassed about being different?
For me, reading is so much more of a treat than candy, that I can't wait to give a reading treat to anyone who stops by my house!
What would happen in your neighborhood if you gave out books?
Kirsti Call is a homeschooling mom of five. Her debut picture book, The Raindrop Who Couldn't Fall, came out December 2013 with Character Publishing. Her family band, Calling Out, plays songs written by her children. She contributes to Writer's Rumpus, and Kids are Writers. If you visit her house, you’ll likely find her watching her backyard chickens or writing, of course. You can find out more about her at www.kirsticall.com.
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