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A Slightly Spooky Halloween Children’s Book List

by Anna Harpe
August 1, 2023
7 Slightly Spooky Halloween Children's Books_Feature

Here’s a slightly spooky, but mostly cute, Halloween children’s book list with fun crafts to pair with each book. Guaranteed to get you in the Halloween spirit!

Updated September 2023

Halloween can be such a fun season for families. It’s an excuse to dress up, get crafty with pumpkins and spiders, and maybe even get a teeny bit spooked. 

I’m always on the lookout for fun Halloween books to add to our seasonal rotations. If you’ve ever spent time browsing your local library’s holiday shelves, then you know- there are a lot of duds out there.

But luckily, each year I’m finding more and more books that have that magical balance I’m looking for: cute + fun + spooky = Halloween perfection! 🎃

So here I am, ready to help you scare up some stories for your own little libraries this Halloween.  Each one is totally maxed out on cuteness with only the slightest hint of a spooky thrill. 

And I promise: there’s not a dud in the bunch! 👻

Halloween Children's Book pin
Photo by Anna Harpe

Halloween Children’s Book List

1. Ghosts in the House by Kazuno Kohara

With its simple orange and black color palette, adorable witch, and clever story, Ghosts in the House is an annual Halloween favorite in my home. 

Activity:

Last year, my daughter and I had so much fun creating our own spooky house inspired by the book.  I love a project like this one that’s open-ended and invites creative play!

2. Stumpkin by Lucy Ruth Cummins

This tale of self-acceptance might have you searching for the less-than-perfect pumpkins from the patch this year. Stumpkin might not have a stem, but he still makes a wonderful jack-o-lantern for the right home!

Activity:

Why not try a pumpkin craft after reading this book with your family?  This pumpkin suncatcher is super easy and makes for a beautiful fall decoration (you might even leave off the stem for your own little Stumpkin!)  

3. Gustavo the Shy Ghost by Flavia Z. Drago

Gustavo the Shy Ghost is packed to the brim with festive colors and cute-as-can-be monsters.  Add an uplifting story of friendship to the mix, and you’ve hit on Halloween perfection!

Activity:

Inspired by our disappearing ghost friend, we made some adorably spooky shrinky dinks! All it takes is #6 plastic from the recycling bin and permanent markers. (Find a tutorial HERE). Easy and fun, my kids loved creating their own Halloween necklaces and backpack charms. 

4. Pick a Pumpkin by Patricia Toht, illustrated by Jarvis

I love how this story perfectly captures the thrill of finding a pumpkin that’s *just right* for your family.  Vibrant and fun with sweetly rhythmic text, this book is a joy to read aloud.  

Activity:

You’ll definitely want to head to the pumpkin patch after reading this story together!  Then why not try one of these fun ways to decorate your perfect pumpkin?

5. No Such Thing by Ella Bailey

Georgia is a clever little girl who knows there’s no such thing as ghosts… right??  I think your kids will love finding all the mischievous (and adorable!) ghosts in this not-so-spooky book.  Ella Bailey’s illustrations are so fun, you won’t mind at all when your little ones ask you to read it again and again! 

Activity:

You can make your own mischievous ghosts appear by using these super fun eye stickers as a drawing prompt for your kids.

6. Twitchy Witchy Itch by Priscilla Tey

This new book stars a sweet little witch tidying up for her guests.  I love the clever illustrations that change style with the entrance of each witchy neighbor and the lovely message of acceptance- witchy mess and all.  

Activity:

You and your family can create a delicious neighborhood full of witchy houses by using this great idea from The Artful Parent archives

I love baking these mini gingerbread houses, giving everyone in the family a chance to create their own unique masterpiece! 

 

7. Boo Who? By Ben Clanton

My kids are huge fans of everything Ben Clanton writes (especially his fun series, Narwhal and Jelly!), so it’s no surprise that they LOVED this sweet little book.  Boo the ghost wants to make friends, but sometimes he feels…well… invisible.  Luckily, his new friends find a game that helps Boo fit in while remaining totally himself.

Activity:

I think watercolor resist art pairs perfectly with a story of an invisible ghost!  Just use white oil pastels so your kids can enjoy watching their artwork magically appear after painting.  

I’m sure this Halloween children’s book list and projects will help add just the right amount of spooky fun to your Halloween season! 

Looking for even more ideas?  Check out some of our favorite Halloween projects below!

halloween black glue featured
Photo by Andrea Martelle

More Halloween Activities for Kids

Want even more Halloween fun?

Check out our Halloween Creativity Pack!

This 45-page printable eBook is full of seasonal coloring pages, drawing prompts, games, and art projects.

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