Ghoul School by Kevin O’Malley is one of those books where I am not “jumping up and down” screaming, “This is the best book EVER!” But it is one of those books where I will be recommending it to people. Mostly, this would be a great read for your library Halloween story time. Or the classroom read when you are at the end of the day (as it is not a Halloween story), or before the Holiday (because it can be a Halloween story), or before the sugar rush has kicked in….
The concept is obvious to the adult: The least scary Ghoul at school, Bea, just wants to dance (her favorite is the Boogie-Man) and sing and tell jokes. This makes her grades not so good and lands her in the office of principal, Mrs. Ima Grave, more than once. Yet, Bea learns something very important: even though she is the least scary monster she is actually the scariest student because jokes and being funny is scary…. To other monsters!
The puns come fast and furious and are way too clever to get bent out of shape over. Our heroine is called Bea A. Fraid. And our Bea is one funny monster friend! Her art teacher is Ms. Ivana Suckublood who gives her a C- in scary pumpkin carving!
The end is sweet and of course, Bea’s friends learn that being funny can be scary and fun, too. The art is clever and has the perfect details to accent O’Malley’s text. The colors are spooky, Halloween like and creepy. Yet, there is nothing here that is “gross” or inappropriate for younger readers.