Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Spooky Book

The Spooky Book

Steve Patsche
Illustrator:  Matthew McElligott 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Walker Books for Young Readers, 1999   ISBN: 978-0802788702

It is a dark and stormy night and Andrew, who is all alone at home, starts to read a spooky book. He reads a story about a girl called Zo Zo. In the story, Zo Zo is reading a "spooky book" about a boy who is living in a house that is "haunted by ghosts and goblins." The story is very odd because it would seem that Andrew and Zo Zo are both reading a spooky book. Andrew cannot understand how it is that he appears to have something in common with a character in a book. How is it that Zo Zo appears to be having the same experiences that Andrew is having? Where does the book leave off and real life begin?

In this unique book readers will get deliciously spooked by a tale that involves two spooky books, and a pair of decidedly spooked children. Cleverly, the author shifts between Andrew and Zo Zo until one cannot be sure which child is real, and which one is a book character. With a delightfully satisfying ending, this is a perfect tale to share on a dark and stormy night.