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Children & YA Non-Fiction

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Age Level:

Ages 9-12



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United States

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The Story of Halloween (Hardcover) by Carol Greene, Linda Bronson (Illustrator) "The story of Halloween begins over 2,000 years ago..." Reading level: Ages 9-12 Hardcover: 40 pages Publisher: HarperCollins (September 7, 2004) Language: English ISBN-10: 006027946X Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 8.3 x 0.4 inches Shipping Weight: 10.40 ounces Dustjacket List Price: 15.99 Good condition, clean/tight text Young readers are given an in-depth look at the fascinating, sometimes creepy, and sometimes funny traditions of Halloween that go all the way back to Celtic times. Full color. From School Library Journal Grade 1-5โ€“Beginning with the Celtic feast of Samhain, and continuing through the ages to today's traditions of trick-or-treating and collecting pennies for UNICEF, Greene offers a straightforward and engaging history of Halloween. Throughout the book, she compares the feasts of long ago with traditions today, and along the way explains the origin of bobbing for apples, fortune-telling traditions, jack-o'-lanterns, and Halloween mischief. Pumpkin art and riddles appear at the end. While colorful and appealing, Bronson's full-page illustrations do little to illuminate the text. Despite the abundance of books on this topic, this title offers a great deal of information in an engaging and not overwhelming fashion. From Booklist Gr. 3-5. In this picture book for older children, the origins of Halloween get a straightforward, attractively designed treatment. Greene begins 2,000 years ago with the Celts, who ended their year on October 31 as their druid priests lit bonfires to protect the people from creatures such as ghosts and elves. She then follows the holiday as it evolved through a Roman harvest ceremony, the Catholic All Saints' Day, and pieces of English, French, and Irish holy days. When the Irish emigrated to the U.S., they brought the holiday with them, including accoutrements such as jack-o'-lanterns. Toward the end, as Greene talks about pranksters doing real damage with tricks, her writing becomes a little fuzzy: "And it was no longer safe for young children to go trick-or-treating." That blanket statement segues into the way communities have dealt with the safety issue, though the book never acknowledges that in some places children continue to trick-or-treat. Bronson's seasonally colored artwork, accented with purples, uses exaggerated shapes and perspectives for a fresh, modern look. Riddles and projects round out the fun. Book Description Today, Halloween means ghosts and goblins and trick-or-treaters ringing the doorbell. But this holiday began more than 2,000 years ago, and back then Halloween meant something very different. In the beginning, it was a harvest festivalduring which the people of Great Britain, Ireland, and northern France gave thanks for their harvested crops. Over time, Halloween took on new meaning, and people believed that elves, spirits, and scary creatures roamed the earth. Now Halloween is a time for children to dress in costumes and go door to door in search of treats, but some ancient traditions are still part of this festive night. Find out how this spooky celebration became a much anticipated holiday in this charming book by Carol Greene, with illustrations by Linda Bronson. About the Author Author Bio: Carol Greene also wrote Baby Jesus, Prince of Peace and a biography of Martin Luther King, Jr. Ms. Greene lives in St. Louis, MO. Illustrator Bio: Leonard Jenkins is a talented new illustrator whose first book, If I Only Had a Horn by Roxanne Orgil, garnered consistent critical acclaim. Mr. Jenkins lives in New York City.

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