Then finally, Mr. Creacher tells the story of a boy named Chris “with a fondness for thieving.” On Halloween, this wayward boy liked to scare other kids for sweets. One day, Chris steals candy from a magical gnome and he discovers he’s been transformed into a monster. Instead of being able to go home, the boy has to spend his days teaching “other children about wicked ways.” When Mr. Creacher reveals that he was the boy (“Til he repaid his debt, a creacher he’d be. And by now you should know: That monster is me”), the children feel bad for him. Feeling remorseful, they promise “never to torment their teacher again.” Rich, colorful illustrations in comic-book-style panels tell the ghoulish tale, which is just spooky enough to thrill young children (kindergarten to 3rd grade) without being too frightening. Case in point: A spell-breaking happy ending reassures readers that curses can be broken and you really can go back home again.


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What are you reading to your kids this Halloween?

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