1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. Books for children
  4. The best Halloween books for kids

The best Halloween books for kids

Looking for some spooky reads this Halloween? Here are some of our favourite books to help kids of all ages get into the Halloween spirit.

While you're getting the kids ready for trick or treating, what better way to get into the spooky spirit than with a Halloween book? Full of witches and wizards, ghosts and ghouls, our list of the best Halloween children's books are perfect for a bedtime story on All Hallows Eve. From cute and funny stories for younger children to scary books for older kids and teens, there's something for everyone. 

Halloween books for babies and toddlers

Who's on the Broom?

by Julia Donaldson

Book cover for Who's on the Broom?

Perfect for little ones on Halloween, join the witch and her animal friends for a magical adventure in Who's on the Broom?: A Room on the Broom Book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, creators of The Gruffalo. With easy-to-lift soft fabric flaps that help develop fine motor skills, this book is perfect for sharing with even the youngest child. 

Busy Halloween

by Louise Forshaw

Book cover for Busy Halloween

With lots to see in Busy Halloween, children can join in the Halloween fun by pushing, pulling and turning the tabs. Carve a pumpkin, then get dressed up, ready to trick or treat and celebrate at a Halloween party!

Children will love playing with this bright and colourful board book with gentle rhyming text and wonderful illustrations by Louise Forshaw.

Room on the Broom: A Push, Pull and Slide Book

by Julia Donaldson

Book cover for Room on the Broom: A Push, Pull and Slide Book

Illustrated by Axel Scheffler

Inquisitive little hands will love the magical moving mechanisms in this board book based on Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s bestselling picture book Room on the Broom. Wiggle the witch’s broomstick, push and pull the tabs to see what happens when they are joined by a dog, a bird and a frog, and scare away the greedy dragon looking for a snack.

Halloween

by Campbell Books

Book cover for Halloween

Little ones will love the bright and friendly illustrations, giant flaps to lift and fun textures to touch in this Halloween board book. Touch the shimmery ghost, the fury werewolf and the witch’s silky hat, and find something new to discover on every page. 


This Little Monster

by Coral Byers

Book cover for This Little Monster

Get your little one ready for an evening of trick or treating with This Little Monster. Join ten creatively costumed young monsters as they dress up and explore their neighbourhood in this fun rhyming story based on the nursery rhyme classic, 'This Little Piggy'. With lots of chances for toddlers and children to practise counting from one to ten and a surprise fold-out ending, this children's Halloween book will become a favourite bedtime story long after the spooky decorations are packed away. 

Bat Can't Sleep

by Carly Gledhill

Book cover for Bat Can't Sleep

Bat is adamant that she isn't at all tired, but as she swings through the trees in the forest and meets lots of colourful critters along the way, she finds herself getting more and more ready for her afternoon nap. A beautiful peek-through picture book from the creator of Frog Goes on Holiday, Bat Can't Sleep will inspire even the least sleepy toddler to get some shut-eye! 


Halloween books for kids aged 3 - 5

Room on the Broom 20th Anniversary Edition

Book cover for Room on the Broom 20th Anniversary Edition

To celebrate 20 years since the original Room on the Broom, this 20th-anniversary edition of the much-loved children's classic features the original story and some exclusive extras. 

There's room on the broom for everyone, so join the witch and her cat as they fly over forests, rivers and mountains on their broomstick – until a storm blows away the witch's hat, bow and wand. Luckily, there are plenty of animal friends around to help out, in return for a ride on the broom! The more the merrier, but will the broom support so many passengers? And is that a greedy dragon, looking for a snack?

Rediscover the magical tale by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler, creators of The Gruffalo.

Room on the Broom Sticker Book

by Julia Donaldson

Book cover for Room on the Broom Sticker Book

Illustrated by Axel Scheffler

This spooky sticker book for kids is full of games, activities and over 400 stickers. Join the witch and her cat as they fly over forests, mountains and rivers on their broomstick, until the witch’s hat, bow and wand are blown away by the wind. Luckily there are some familiar animal friends on hand to help . . .

Rich Witch, Poor Witch

by Peter Bently

Book cover for Rich Witch, Poor Witch

Rich Witch, Poor Witch is a fantastically funny tale of witch sisters Rita and Rose. Rose is poor, and helps others for free, while Rita is rich, and charges clients big fees. But when Rita tries everything she knows to make princess Anna Lucinda Cecilia Grace smile and still fails, she might need her sister to save the day. 

I Can Catch a Monster

by Bethan Woollvin

Book cover for I Can Catch a Monster

Bo the Brave is a rebellious little girl on the hunt for a fearsome monster. Her brothers say she’s too little to catch a monster, but Bo is smart, strong and has big ideas of her own. She sets out to catch a beast, but can she defeat the furious griffin, the hideous kraken and the big scary dragon? Or, will she find herself some new friends instead? This is a vibrant picture book with an empowering message about standing up for yourself and not judging by appearance. 

Spooky Jokes

by Macmillan Children's Books

Book cover for Spooky Jokes

Which plant likes Halloween the most?

Bam-BOO.


This collection is full of over 200 silly and spooky jokes to share at Halloween. The perfect (trick or) treat to return to for more laughs every year. 

Dracula Spectacular

Book cover for Dracula Spectacular

Dracula Boy is more giggles and glitter than beastly and bitter, but will he dare to follow his heart and live life in technicolour? Dracula Spectacular is a heart-warming tale about learning to be brave, kind, and  yourself, with plenty of spooks and sparkle!

Jake Bakes a Monster Cake

by Lucy Rowland

Book cover for Jake Bakes a Monster Cake

Jake is baking a birthday cake for his best friend Sam, but when his friends help out, things turn rather monstrous. With spider legs, rotten eggs, slugs and slime, Sam is in for a very smelly surprise.

The Gruffalo

by Julia Donaldson

Book cover for The Gruffalo

Have you meet the Gruffalo who lives in the deep dark wood? With his terrible tusks and terrible claws and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws, it's no wonder fox, owl and snake are all terrified of him!

There Was a Young Zombie Who Swallowed A Worm

by Kaye Baillie

Book cover for There Was a Young Zombie Who Swallowed A Worm

A brand new book by Kaye Baillie, There Was a Young Zombie Who Swallowed A Worm brings a hilarious Halloween-themed twist to the classic earworm-inducing story of the old lady who swallowed a fly. Featuring a cast of spooky favourites, including witches, ghouls and monsters, this funny rhyming story is the perfect Halloween book for kids who love all things gross!  

Grimms' Fairy Tales, Retold by Elli Woollard, Illustrated by Marta Altes

by Elli Woollard

Book cover for Grimms' Fairy Tales, Retold by Elli Woollard, Illustrated by Marta Altes

What better time to read Grimms' classic creepy fairytales than the spookiest time of the year? With poetic rhyming verse and beautifully detailed illustrations, this new edition of Grimms' Fairytales breathes new life into some of the world's best-loved children's stories, including Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel and The Elves and the Shoemaker.

I Am Bat

by Morag Hood

Book cover for I Am Bat

Bat doesn't like many things, and you could even say he's a little bit grumpy. But one thing he really, really likes is cherries. So when his favourite fruit starts to go missing, Bat sets out on a mission to find the culprit and get his beloved snacks back. With its bold, bright illustrations and message about the importance of sharing, Morag Hood's I Am Bat will make a great Halloween bedtime story for young children. 

Halloween books for kids aged 5 - 9

The Monster Doctor

by John Kelly

Book cover for The Monster Doctor

There is no thing too small, and no creature too big for the monster doctor! Ozzy was just an ordinary boy – until his job at the monster doctor’s surgery. Now he’s spending his summer helping the monster doctor cure her patients, but can he help her save the whole surgery? This is the first in a howlingly hilarious series of monster adventures from John Kelly. Don’t miss the second book in the series, The Monster Doctor: Revolting Rescue.

The Monster Doctor: Foul Play

by John Kelly

Book cover for The Monster Doctor: Foul Play

The Monster Ball Cup is already the most gruesome game ever, but when the ball eats the referee in the final match, it's up to Ozzy and the monster doctor to once again save the day. 

The fourth book in this hilarious series of monster adventures will have you laughing your head off . . . literally. Written and illustrated by John Kelly, don't miss the epic Monster Ball finale between the Fangtown Fantoms vs the Awful All-Stars!

Spooky Poems

by James Carter

Book cover for Spooky Poems

A spooktacular collection of poems about all things creepy - from ghosts and ghouls, to witches and vampires. 

This book may well disturb you,

it creeps into your dreams,

for nothing you read in this book

is ever quite the way it seems . . . 

Goth Girl and the Sinister Symphony

by Chris Riddell

Book cover for Goth Girl and the Sinister Symphony

There are musical goings-on at Ghastly-Gorm Hall and a spooky mystery for Ada Goth to solve in Goth Girl and the Sinister Symphony, the fourth book in the Costa Children’s Book Award winning Goth Girl series by Chris Riddell, Children’s Laureate 2015-2017.

Discover all the books in the Goth Girl series here.

A Robot Squashed My Teacher

by Pooja Puri

Book cover for A Robot Squashed My Teacher

A Robot Squashed My Teacher follows Esha Verma, her sniffling apprentice Broccoli and his pet tortoise as they compete to win the ultimate prize for young inventors, the Brain Trophy. When their ingenious invention malfunctions and turns Esha's teacher into a pigeon, the inventors must use all their brainpower to get him back and make sure they win the coveted cup. This laugh-out-loud chapter book for middle-grade readers will have aspiring young inventors captivated this Halloween. 

The Breakfast Club Adventures

by Marcus Rashford

Book cover for The Breakfast Club Adventures

The first fiction book from England football star and child poverty campaigner, Marcus Rashford (who celebrates his birthday on Halloween!), The Breakfast Club Adventures is inspired by the footballer's school days with his best mates in Manchester. In this chapter book, join Marcus, Stacey, Lise and Asim as they join forces with the Breakfast Club Investigators and solve the creepy mystery that's been haunting their school. 

Beyond Platform 13

by Sibéal Pounder

Book cover for Beyond Platform 13

An adventure tale in which natural and magical worlds collide, Beyond Platform 13 is a brand new story inspired by Eva Ibbotson's classic children's book. When Odge Gribble travels to Vienna to discover why the mist of his magical world is disappearing, he meets Lina, a nine-year-old girl with an appetite for adventure. As they join forces and try to solve the mystery, they soon find themselves pitted against a gaggle of wicked harpies and must work together to try to save the mist from disappearing for good. Sure to get readers in the spooky spirit, this book will make an ideal Halloween story for young readers readers who love everything magical. 

Straw Into Gold: Fairy Tales Re-Spun

by Hilary McKay

Book cover for Straw Into Gold: Fairy Tales Re-Spun

Imagine if Cinderella didn't lose her shoe at the end of the ball or if Snow White hadn’t gone to live with the seven dwarves? Hilary McKay reimagines some of the world's best-loved fairytales in this creative collection of retellings, which make ideal bedtime stories. Her alternative and often very funny new outcomes for characters including Rapunzel and Red Riding Hood, will show young readers that there's never just one way a story can be told. 

Halloween books for kids aged 9 - 12

The Monsters of Rookhaven

by Pádraig Kenny

Book cover for The Monsters of Rookhaven

This thought-provoking and chilling novel from Pádraig Kenny, beautifully illustrated by Edward Bettison, explores ideas of difference and empathy. When the glamour that protects Mirabelle and her unusual family is broken, an orphaned brother and sister stumble upon their home of Rookhaven. Mirabelle has always known she was a monster, but she soon learns that there are friends to be made in the outside world. But then something comes along that threatens them all . . .  

The Shadows of Rookhaven

by Pádraig Kenny

Book cover for The Shadows of Rookhaven

Shadows gather once again across Rookhaven, in the sequel to The Monsters of Rookhaven.

Once in a hundred years, The Great Configuration occurs. Monsters flock to Rookhaven from all over the country – but not every guest is who they seem, as a disguised interloper secretly harbours plans of destruction. Mirabelle discovers that those from outside Rookhaven do not consider her family at all, leaving her to risk everything in the search for knowledge of her true history as a part-human, part-monster. 

The Orphans of St Halibut's

by Sophie Wills

Book cover for The Orphans of St Halibut's

Life has been great for the orphans of St Halibut’s since they buried the matron (it was an accident!) but they must make sure no one finds out that they’re on their own. When they find out an inspector is on his way, they need to convince him everything is ok, or he’ll send them straight to the Mending House – where badly behaved orphans go and never return. But when the inspector isn’t quite what they expected, things get out of hand very quickly. 

The Beast

by Brendan Reichs

Book cover for The Beast

The Beast is the second book in the darkly suspenseful Darkdeep series from Brendan Reichs and Ally Condie. After saving their town from a monstrous figment invasion, Nico, Opal, Emma and Logan just want to stay out of trouble, enjoy Halloween and explore their mysterious clubhouse. But then a dangerous new breed of figments start appearing . . . 

Discover The Darkdeep, the first book in the series, here. 

Mountwood School for Ghosts

by Toby Ibbotson

Book cover for Mountwood School for Ghosts

Fredegonda, Goneril, and Drusilla are Great Hagges. They think that ghosts these days are decidedly lacking and it's time for them to learn a thing or two about being scary. And what better way to teach them than to set up their very own school for ghosts?

The Secret of Platform 13

by Eva Ibbotson

Book cover for The Secret of Platform 13

Under Platform 13 at King's Cross Station there is a secret door that leads to a magical island that appears only once every nine years.

And when it opens, four mysterious figures step into the streets of London. A wizard, an ogre, a fey and a young hag have come to find the prince of their kingdom who was stolen as a baby nine years before. But the prince has become a horrible rich boy called Raymond Trottle, who doesn't understand magic and is determined not to be rescued.

A Far Away Magic

by Amy Wilson

Book cover for A Far Away Magic

After her parents are killed, Angel is sent to a new school where she meets Bavar, a mysterious boy with a destiny he can't face. As Angel and Bavar are pushed together on a quest to defeat the monsters that tore her life apart and mend the rift that is threatening to tear the world as they know it, Angel must face some truths about herself and her past. A mesmerising fantasy story, A Far Away Magic will delight independent young readers this Halloween. 

Young adult Halloween books

Unraveller

by Frances Hardinge

Book cover for Unraveller

In a world where anyone can cast a life-destroying curse, only one person has the power to unravel them. Kellen does not fully understand his unique gift, but helps those who are cursed, like his friend Nettle who was trapped in the body of a bird for years. She is now Kellen's constant companion and his closest ally. But the Unraveller carries a curse himself and, unless he and Nettle can remove it, Kellen is a danger to everything – and everyone – around him . . .

The Cheerleaders

by Kara Thomas

Book cover for The Cheerleaders

This gripping YA chiller from Kara Thomas is the perfect Halloween read for young adults. There are no more cheerleaders in the town of Sunnybrook. Since the last cheerleader died five years ago, no one wanted to be reminded of the girls they’d lost. But for Monica, the sister of the last cheerleader to die, it’s not that easy to forget. And soon, Monica realises people know more than they’re letting on . . . 

There's Someone Inside Your House

by Stephanie Perkins

Book cover for There's Someone Inside Your House

Makani Young is still adjusting to her new life after moving to Nebraska from Hawaii. However, one by one the students begin to die in a series of gruesome murders and Makani doesn't know who's next on the list. This school year may turn out to be one to die for . . . Literally. 

Cuckoo Song

by Frances Hardinge

Book cover for Cuckoo Song

When Triss wakes up after an accident, she knows something isn't right. She has an insatiable hunger, her sister is scared of her and her parents keep whispering behind closed doors. Soon Triss finds out that what happened to her is more terrible and strange than she could ever have thought, and to fix things she must travel to the terrifying Underbelly, before it's too late . . . 

Plague Land

by Alex Scarrow

Book cover for Plague Land

Leon and his sister Grace have recently moved to London, and are struggling to settle into their new school,  when rumours of a deadly unidentified virus start to fill the news. Within a week the virus reaches London, and the siblings have to run for their lives. But the virus isn't the only danger out there . . . 

Discover all the books in the remade series here. 

Burn Our Bodies Down

by Rory Power

Book cover for Burn Our Bodies Down

Margot's past has always been a mystery to her, and no matter how many questions she asks, her mum is determined to hold onto their family's secrets. Longing for a family to call her own, Margot sets out to find out who she really is, with chilling consequences. A horror-thriller story for Young Adult readers and thriller fans alike, Burn Our Bodies Down is sure to send a shiver up your spine this Halloween. 

The Woods Are Always Watching

by Stephanie Perkins

Book cover for The Woods Are Always Watching

When high school best friends Neena and Josie embark on a backpacking trip through the woods, it's supposed to be the adventure of a lifetime. Instead, it very quickly turns into a nightmare they'll never be able to forget. Not for the faint-hearted, this horror story by Stephanie Perkins is for you if you're looking for a spooking this Halloween. 

Deeplight

by Frances Hardinge

Book cover for Deeplight

Frances Hardinge creates rich, unforgettable fantasy worlds in her best-loved YA fiction books, and the underworld seascape she introduces in Deeplight is no exception. Follow teenage urchins and deepsea scavengers Jelt and Hark as they seek to discover the secrets of the depths below and learn more about the danger that lurks in the undersea. 

The Lie Tree

by Frances Hardinge

Book cover for The Lie Tree

A story of revenge and justice, The Lie Tree is the Costa-Award-winning novel by Frances Hardinge. While investigating her father's mysterious death, Faith stumbles upon a strange tree, which reveals secrets when you tell it untruths. As she's drawn in by the potential to discover what led to her father's fate, Faith's lies spiral out of control, putting her and her small island community in grave danger. This dark and gripping fantasy story will enthral young readers this Halloween. 

A Skinful of Shadows

by Frances Hardinge

Book cover for A Skinful of Shadows

Makepeace has learned that when night falls, she must protect herself from ghosts that try to possess her in the darkness. Until one night, a momentary lapse lets a spirit in, and her mind is no longer hers. A ghoulish tale set in the shadows of the English Civil War, Frances Hardinge's A Skinful of Shadows is as evocative and creepy as it is thrilling.

 


Pumpkinheads

by Rainbow Rowell

Book cover for Pumpkinheads

All good things must come to an end, and in the case of Josiah and Deja, their perfect Halloween job at the world's best pumpkin patch is just about to for the final time. A graphic novel about the joy of teenage friendship told in Rainbow Rowell's inimitable storytelling style, Pumpkinheads is the story of Josiah and Deja and their last big adventure before they set off for college.