Countdown to Halloween!: With a Story a Day (Peanuts)
This collection of Peanuts stories has everything Halloween—costumes, parties, trick or treating, and the Great Pumpkin! There’s a story for each day in October to make the time before the best day of the year pass more quickly. It’s the perfect gift for Peanuts and Halloween fans!
What I loved: This is such a delightful idea, and children will adore the format, reading a new story each day. Each story, though part of a larger collection, is independent with a small resolution and cute plot. The accompanying illustration on each page shows a moment from that day's story to help spark young imaginations. Each story captures all the fun and silliness of the Peanuts characters and their interactions plus relationships. The overall theme definitely creates some anticipation for the final story as readers experience Linus's dedication and excitement about the Great Pumpkin. Particular favorites in our house have been those featuring Woodstock and Snoopy, such as when they are choosing a costume for Woodstock, but there's plenty of Halloween-themed fun to be had with the Great Pumpkin, practicing Trick-or-Treating, and more.
The font is printed fairly large, which also makes this nice and easy to read. It's perfect for parents who love a variety of things to read and would make a great choice for a whole month of new bedtime stories. This would work best for preschoolers and older children who can understand the themes, nuances in stories, and appreciate the mostly imageless format.
What left me wanting more: While many stories do follow the same themes, they are not always clear in leading up to the day, so not fully interconnected (for instance, one of the early stories features Snoopy waiting with Linus on Halloween, irritated about not yet seeing the Great Pumpkin). It really is a collection of stories and not a chapter book type format of a single story. I also was not sure about some of themes of the individual stories, such as between Sally and Linus with her infatuation and not listening to him about not wanting to be called her "Sweet Babboo," but a discussion around respecting other's boundaries can be helpful outside the context of the book.
Final verdict: Overall, COUNTDOWN TO HALLOWEEN!: WITH A STORY A DAY is a delightful, Halloween-themed collection of Peanuts stories that are sure to charm young readers. Whether used as novel bedtime stories for the whole month of October or just shared during the month, this book is sure to get readers into the Halloween spirit!