Author Feature: Alvin Schwartz

Looking for some Halloween-y goodness the whole family can enjoy? Try something from every 90 kid’s favorite underrated horror writer/folklorist: Alvin Schwartz.

He is best known, of course, for Scary Stories to Tell in the middle grade collection of spooky folklore is meant to be read aloud, and even includes handy asides for how best to scare your listeners as you go. If the more horror-based stories get to be too much, try one of the sillier songs or poems, or even flip to the “Aaaaaaah” chapter at the end full of stories to make you laugh away your worries.

If your aspiring horror reader is looking for something of an easier reading level, try the delightful: In a Dark, Dark Room: and Other Scary Stories

With far less scary pictures than it’s better known brother, In a Dark, Dark Room is written so that beginning reader can puzzle their own way through the spooky folktales told around Halloween. Many of these end humorously.

Of course, not everything Schwartz writes is spooky. Our collection does boast a copy of his delightful Ten Copycats in a Boat: and Other Riddles:

Fun for the whole family! Easy to read riddles for beginning readers to try out on all their closest family and friends. Plenty of puns to make the whole family forget about how spooky Halloween can be.

For example: What does a cat have that no other animal has?

(The answer is: Kittens)

Because at the end of the day, Alvin Schwartz is a lore-ist. All of his books end listing the sources of each and every folktale he’s used to spook or amuse you. If you like a bit of history with your spooky stories, give him a try.


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