Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Hungry Ghost of Rue Orleans

The Hungry Ghost of Rue Orleans

Mary Quattlebaum
Illustrator:  Patricia Castalao 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Random House Books for Young Readers, 2011   ISBN: 978-0375862076

Fred lives in an old house on Rue Orleans tending his cactus and eating air when he gets hungry. The house is in bad shape and everything inside is covered with a layer of dust, which makes it the perfect hangout for a ghost like Fred.

Then one day Fred’s quiet is disturbed when Pierre and his daughter Marie come into the house. They are going to turn Fred’s house into a restaurant, and Fred is not at all happy about it. Despite Fred’s protestations, the house is painted, repaired, and cleaned. It is furnished and soon diners are eating Pierre’s delicious gumbo, crawfish, and red beans and rice.

Fred has had enough, and since no one is listening to him, he decides that more drastic measures are needed. Fred moans and he makes the food jump in their dishes. Surely such a spooky performance will scare off the restaurant guests for good, and then Fred will get his house back. Alas for Fred, the guests at the restaurant love his spooky doings. They add a little something special to the enjoyment of their meals.

Readers who have a fondness for ghostly tales are sure to enjoy this special title in which Mary Quattlebaum brings together delicious food and a ghost to give us a delightful and memorable story.