I Got the Spooky Spirit

Bloomsbury. Jul. 2024. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781547606993.
PreS-Gr 1–Following up on earlier collaborations, including I Got the Christmas Spirit and I Got the School Spirit, the author and illustrator team present another entertainingly rhythmic story that invites listener participation. In an urban setting, a young Black girl eagerly prepares for Halloween. As leaves fall and pumpkins appear on the streets, the girl chooses a pumpkin so large that the illustration spills outside of the page. She then sets to work, carving it into a jack-o’-lantern. Decorating the house, making spooky treats, and, of course, planning the perfect costume are all part of the preparations. Rhymes keep the text moving along briskly, with accent phrases such as “A-ha!” “Ooey Gooey,” and “Jeepers Creepers!” added into each illustration for emphasis. The big night finally arrives, and costumed friends and family enjoy trick-or-treating and gathering for a lively party. The spooky spirit keeps everyone going, then fades as the night ends. By that time, the illustrations have taken on a darker, but never frightening, tone—even as the girl who had dressed as a vampire confronts what might be a real bat!
VERDICT This festive frolic is perfect for a younger audience who like the idea of scary more than they want actual scares.

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