Halloween is fast approaching and that means a new batch of frighteningly good books are set to hit the shelves. First to arrive at my door is a quirky picture book from Sofie Laguna and Marc McBride.
Alby and his family are new on Pleasant Street and life is pretty good…the house is perfect, the garden is awesome - there’s even a pool - and their rather unusual pet, Delia, is slowly being trained. It would be even better if Alby had some friends. Could his favourite night of the year, Halloween, be the opportunity to bond with the neighbourhood kids or will dad and his obsession with tricks spoil everything…
A night of trick or treating provides the perfect potion in an exuberant, spooky and highly entertaining caper about the new kid in town who just wants to feel like he belongs. And belonging would be a whole lot easier if he didn’t have a bizarre house, embarrassing parents, mad scientist grandparents, an unusual pet, a tree that likes to accompany the family on walks and a few monsters lurking around. But without such eccentricities life would be a lot less fun and having such quirks is one sure way to get the kids to notice you and to welcome you into their friendship group.
Crammed with wonderfully weird and colourful illustrations, this tale of an unusual family, embracing who you are and making friends is a great read for the spooky season. Frights, spooks and Halloween celebrations scream out from every page and it makes for a proper feast for the eyes with so much to look at and spot - there’re cobwebs, pumpkins and bats galore, and my personal favourites…the bone spindle staircase, the swimming pool of green slime and the cauldron of eyeball soup.
Venture onto Pleasant Street if you dare.
With huge thanks to Allen and Unwin for the copy I received in exchange for an honest review.
Recommended for 4+.