Ghostly Book Reviews for Walker Books by Emma Davis
26th October 2017
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With Halloween just around the corner, ‘Boo Who?’ and ‘I Want to be in a Scary Story’ bring a touch of ghostly humour this Autumn. It was a pleasure to review these two new books published by Walker Books.
Meet Boo, a loveable but lonely ghost. As he watches four friends happily playing together, Boo realises that it’s quite scary being new and not knowing anyone. Not to worry though as Sprinkles, Rex, Wild and Gizmo soon make him welcome, inviting him to join their games. Unfortunately, Boo’s ghostly appearance makes it difficult for him – bounce ball, pick-up twigs and tag are all impossible for poor Boo. He begins to wonder if anyone would even notice if he disappeared, and, in a series of four images, we see Boo become fainter and fainter on the page. Meanwhile, Sprinkles, Rex, Wild and Gizmo begin a game of hide and seek together. Gizmo is quick to find everyone…but where is Boo? Finally, Boo has found a game he is good at, all thanks to his ghostly presence. He decides that being new isn’t scary anymore as he actually fits right in.
This is a fabulous story of friendships and celebrating differences. The simple, bold images contribute to the sense of emotion, helping children understand how the characters might be feeling. A very relatable story for many children.
Illustrated by Jean Jullien
Little Monster wants to be in a scary story. This cleverly written book with the writer’s voice in black and Little Monster’s voice in purple makes storytelling fun and interactive – great for putting on a scary voice! Together, the writer and Little Monster guide the story, giving ideas and suggestions as to what should happen next. However, the spooky house is too spooky, the creepy witch is too creepy and Little Monster is scared of the ghost. How will Little Monster fit into a scary story if everything frightens him?
Little Monster decides that he doesn’t want to be scared…he wants to do the scaring! There’s much anticipation as Little Monster changes the direction of the story and makes his way up the stairs and towards the door, ready to scare the person inside the room. Little Monster wants a funny story so behind the door will be…a teeny weeny monkey and his friend! However, the ‘friend’ turns out to be rather larger than Little Monster was expecting. The friend is actually a gorilla! After a little contemplation, Little Monster plays a trick. He chases the monkey and gorilla out of the spooky house and through the dark and scary forest as the writer of the story becomes increasingly scared. “Little Monster? Are you out here?” the writer asks. Then…Boo! Out pops Little Monster with a cheeky grin.
The bright, bold illustrations which fill each page are great for drawing children in, building anticipation and making us wonder what will happen next. It’s hard not to fall in love with Little Monster and his humorous antics.
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