I Want to Be in a Scary Story
Sean Taylor, Author
Jean Jullien, Illustrator
Candlewick, Fiction, Jul. 11, 20017
Suitable for ages: 2-5
Themes: Monster, Scary story, Courage, Halloween
Opening: Hello, Little Monster. What do you want to do today?
Publisher Synopsis: Our author would like to write a funny story, but his main character — Monster — has a different idea. He wants to be the star of a chilling, petrifying, utterly terrifying SCARY story. But scary stories . . . well, they can be very scary — especially for their characters! Particularly when they involve dark forests and creepy witches and spooky houses . . . Oh yikes and crikes, this is definitely not the scary story Monster had in mind! Maybe he wants to be in a funny story after all!
Why I like this book:
Sean Taylor has written a playful and clever story about the antics of a Monster who wants to star in a scary story, as long as he is the one doing the scaring. Taylor assumes the role of the narrator and commentator for Monster. The story is character driven and focuses entirely upon Monster. The text flows nicely as the narrator tries to help the Monster set the scene and select the characters. There is only one problem, the Monster doesn’t like dark forests, haunted houses, ghosts and witches.
This is a great example where Jean Jullien’s colorful, bold and creepy illustrations deliver a funny response, much to the delight of readers. The words and illustrations depend upon each other. Readers will focus on the hilarious facial expressions. I Want to Be in a Scary Story is adorable and has a great ending. It is a perfect Halloween book for children.
Resources: Read the book again and have them help make up other stories for Monster. Give them paper and markers and let them make their own scary story. This is also a time to talk about what scares your child and what makes them feel safe.
Sean Taylor is an author, storyteller, and teacher who has written more than forty books for young children, including Don’t Call Me Choochie Pooh!, A Brave Bear and Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise.
*I won I Want to Be in a Scary Story on Mia Wenjen’s website, Pragmatic Mom. Visit her wonderful diverse children’s literature site.
Every Friday, authors and KidLit bloggers post a favorite picture book. To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books (PPB) with resources, please visit her website.