Ready to get into mood for spooky season? You might watch a few Halloween movies for kids on Netflix or have a dance party to release all of the excitement with Halloween songs. But, there’s nothing quite like the best Halloween books for kids to really get everyone in the spirit for all things spooky and, of course, fun.

There’s nothing like a good ghost story. Or a story about a pug who dresses like a pumpkin. Or a vampire bunny. For many kids, celebrating Halloween is a lot more enjoyable minus the jump scares. The good news is things can be beautiful and just the right amount of spooky, without being scary at all. Some of the latest Halloween children’s books represent all kinds of Halloween goodness: from pumpkin harvests to witches that teach deep insight about friendship and love. So turn the lights down—just a bit—and curl up together with your little ghouls to share some of the best Halloween books for kids.

Get cozy and get ready to read our list of the best Halloween books for kids

Baby and toddler Halloween kids books

Squeaky Bat book

Squeaky Bat by Maggie Fischer

This adorable new interactive board book for babies and toddlers features a little bat that kids can press to hear it squeak as the bat soars through the magical Halloween night sky.

Pumpkins book

Pumpkins by Gail Gibbons

It’s all about pumpkins this time of year! This beautifully illustrated board book will thrill babies and toddlers as they learn about the life cycle of a pumpkin from seed to pie and everything in between. 

It Sounds Like Halloween book

It Sounds Like Halloween! by Maggie Fischer

Another sweet new interactive Halloween-themed book from author Maggie Fischer, this time illustrated by Gareth Williams. Toddlers and preschoolers alike will enjoy turning the pages and playing the four different sound buttons when the story prompts (or just when they feel like it).

ike has a fright

Ike Has A Fright by Cathleen Roach

Little Ike may be a bat but he sure is scared of Halloween. Ike doesn’t know how he’ll get through the night with all of the terrifying goblins and ghosts roaming about. With the help of a few friends this little bat might just discover that there’s nothing scary about Halloween.

construction site gets a fright

Construction Site Gets a Fright!: A Halloween Lift-the-Flap Book by Sherri Duskey Rinker

The construction crew from the beloved Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site is back and they’re getting ready for Halloween. This interactive, rhyming book is one of the best Halloween books for kids who might be a little anxious.

Preschool and early elementary Halloween kids books

Amara's Farm book

Amara’s Farm (Where In the Garden?) by JaNay Brown-Wood

A celebration of fall on the farm, this is the first in a four-book series designed for readers as young as three to teach kids about a variety of seasonal produce grown in different gardens. Join Amara as she prepares pumpkins for an autumnal feast. The book even includes a recipe for Molasses Pumpkin Bread!

A Friend for Ghost book

A Friend for Ghost by Suzanne Kaufman

Poor little ghost has a hard time making friends. Between people being afraid of him and people not even seeing him, it can be lonely. Yes, it’s a Halloween book, but it’s also a year-round, sweet book about friendship ideally suited for children anywhere from four to eight and up. 

Boo Stew book

Boo Stew by Donna L. Washington

Award-winning storyteller Donna L. Washington puts a spooky twist on the Goldilocks plot. Curly Locks is sweet, smart and loves to cook. The problem is, she’s pretty terrible at it and most people in Toadsuck Swamp know to steer clear of her meals. Spoiler alert: Curly Locks uses her talents to save the day.  

If Your Babysitter Is a Bruja book

If Your Babysitter Is a Bruja by Ana Siqueira

‘Tis the night before Halloween and the new babysitter is looking decidedly witch-like. But one little girl won’t fall for the bruja’s antics. This bilingual book is enchanting and even more fun to read out loud together. 

lila and the jack o lantern

Lila and the Jack-o'-Lantern: Halloween Comes to America by Nancy Churnin

Lila and her family have just left Ireland for their new home in America. With Halloween just around the corner, she’s already feeling homesick for the Irish traditions they used to celebrate on Halloween night. Now she’ll have to figure out how to bring a little bit of that Irish tradition to her new home.

a spoonful of frogs

A Spoonful of Frogs

The secret to a delicious, witchy soup is a spoonful of frogs. But frogs love to leap! If you can’t get the frogs to stay in the spoon then how do you get them in the cauldron? This silly Halloween children’s book is sure to become a family favorite.

grumpy monkey don't be scared

Grumpy Monkey Don't Be Scared by Suzanne Lang

Join Grumpy Monkey and his friends for a Halloween night like no other. Halloween in the jungle is a unique experience with lots of eerie sights, sounds and smells. Will the jungle friends be brave enough to get all of their treats? 

first night of howlergarten

First Night of Howlergarten by Benson Shum

Future werewolves all go to howlergarten where they practice tracking scents and listening to the wind and so much more. But Sophie’s first day of school isn’t at all like what she thought it would be. The little werewolf-in-training has so much to learn.

Elementary and early chapter Halloween kids books

Witch Hazel book

Witch Hazel by Molly Idle

Every once in a while a children’s book is published that embodies the true magic of reading and imagination. This is just that kind of book, one to read, re-read and treasure. “Witch Hazel” is not just a Halloween book, it’s a book about the power of storytelling, the importance of hearing each other’s stories, the beauty of aging and the bittersweet truth of new life after loss.

Available Oct. 11.

Costume Parade book

Costume Parade by Stephanie Calmenson and Joanna Cole

The fourth book in an early chapter book series co-authored by Stephanie Calmenson and Magic School Bus author Joanna Cole. Join two best friends, Allie and Amy, who love doing everything together including getting ready for the big costume party for Halloween. What will they do when they meet a friend along the way who needs help, but helping him will make them late? 

The Pug Who Wanted to Be a Pumpkin book

The Pug Who Wanted to Be a Pumpkin by Bella Swift

Peggy the pug is back in the fifth story of this illustrated middle-grade series. This time, Peggy’s pal Chloe is too worried about monsters to go trick-or-treating. Peggy doesn’t want her to miss out on the fun so to help her feel less scared, Peggy needs the perfect costume. 

Middle-grade Halloween kids books

Lumberjackula book

Lumberjackula by Mat Heagerty

A middle-grade graphic novel about a hilariously cute half-vampire, half-lumberjack boy who doesn’t want to be either. He just wants to dance. The beautiful thing is, it’s his natural lumberjack toughness and spooky vampire-ness that help make his unique dance moves.

Stories to Keep You Alive book

Stories to Keep You Alive Despite Vampires by Ben Acker

For fans of “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark,” this is the perfect chapter book to put you in the mood for the spookiest season of them all. A middle grade collection of stories that range from spooky to silly that will (hopefully) help you make it through the night in any haunted house full of vampires, or a night after too much candy. 

Bunnicula The Graphic Novel book

Bunnicula: The Graphic Novel by James Howe and Andrew Donkin

Believe it or not, it’s been forty years since James Howe’s “Bunnicula” novel was published. Just in time for your late night Halloween reading plans, the first ever complete graphic novel version of the “tail” of one very odd bunny has just been released. Laugh out loud or howl at the moon, while Chester the cat and Harold the dog try to figure out what that cute fluffy new pet is really up to.

the ghost job

The Ghost Job by Greg van Eekhout

Zenith and her friends have all been ghosted. That’s right, they’re literal ghosts! But the thick and thieves friends are onto a new scheme, stealing a machine that just might send them back to the real world. First, they have to figure out how to get past the dead necromancer who wants to use them as lab rats.

A version of this post was published September 8, 2022. It has been updated.