A Haunted Halloween by Ray O’Ryan #BookReview

Title: A Haunted Halloween | Series: Galaxy Jack #11 | Author: Ray O’Ryan | Illustrator: Jason Kraft | Publisher: Little Simon | Pages: 128 | ISBN13: 9781481434911 | Genre: Kid’s Sci-Fi & Horror | Language: English | Triggers: None | Rating: 4 out of 5 | Source: Library

A Haunted Halloween

Zack doesn’t think ghosts exist—but a haunted Halloween might change his mind in the eleventh Galaxy Zack chapter book adventure.

Zack absolutely, one hundred percent does not believe in ghosts—even when his friend Drake tells him that they are real. But as Halloween nears, weird things start to happen, and Zack begins to think that he might be haunted. Can Drake help Zack solve what goes bump in the night?

With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Galaxy Zack chapter books are perfect for beginning readers.


Book cover for A Haunted Halloween

A Haunted Halloween Review

The author knows what he’s doing. I went into A Haunted Halloween, the 11th book in a series, completely blind and had no problems. I didn’t even realize until after I’d finished reading it and was looking closely at the cover that it was part of a series. And, as stated on the blurb, this is a book that is perfect for beginning (chapter) readers. The line and word spacing, the font, and the simple word choice are all exactly on point. The illustrations are fun and quirky. Ray O’Ryan and Jason Kraft a great team.

I really liked the mix of sci-fi and spooky that A Haunted Halloween had going on. The author also did a great job of creating a futuristic ‘alien’ world that was still perfectly recognizable to little readers. Phones are hyperphones that can call between galaxies, but still just phones. Arcade games are arcade games. There is tech, but it’s kept to an easy to understand level.

The only thing I would have changed was that the message given was kind of that you should believe your friends if they tell you something. Because they might be telling the truth. Well, yeah, they might be, but we should not be teaching our kids that. We should be teaching our kids to ask for proof rather than blindly accept something. So, yeah, that’s kind of a problem. I wouldn’t not recommend the series though. I would just make sure that with A Haunted Halloween at least, you make sure your kid understand how the message in it is wrong.

Overall, problematic message aside, A Haunted Halloween would be a great choice to read with your beginning chapter reader this October. It’s got an interesting ending, the spooky stuff is perfectly explained, and Zach is a cool little kid.

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