Books

9 Canadian books for kids and young adults to read this Halloween

Have an spooky good time with these great books.

It's Halloween time! Check out these books for younger readers and young adults featuring zombies, ghosts, magical creatures and other spooky things.

Zombie Prince by Matt Beam, illustrated by Luc Melanson

The Zombie Prince is written by Matt Beam and illustrated by Luc Melanson. (Groundwood Books)

In Zombie Prince, when a bully calls Brandon a fairy, he decides to turn into a zombie that can take down enemies with tears. His best friends become a ghost and a vampire so they can help protect him at recess. Together, the zombie, ghost and vampire are able to put an end to the bullying.

Zombie Prince is for ages 4 to 7.

Mary Who Wrote Frankenstein by Linda Bailey, illustrated by Júlia Sardà

Mary Who Wrote Frankenstein is a biographical picture book by Linda Bailey & Júlia Sardà. (Lia Grainger, Tundra Books, Júlia Sardà)

This biographical picture book tells the story of Mary Shelley and how she came up with idea for her classic horror novel Frankenstein. The story begins as Mary runs away with poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and ends up around a fire with the likes of Lord Byron. When he suggests they compete to see who can come up with the best ghost story, Mary becomes consumed with the challenge.

Mary Who Wrote Frankenstein is for ages 5 to 8.

The Dragon Thief by Zetta Elliott

Zetta Elliott is a writer of middle-grade novels. (Random House Children's Books, CBC)

The second instalment of the Dragons in a Bag book series follows the fantasy adventures of young Jaxon and his life with dragons. When he's put in charge of taking care of baby dragons, he discovers that one is missing. This event sets Jaxon off on an adventure to find his best friend's sister, Kavita, who just might be the dragon thief.

The Dragon Thief is for readers aged 8 to 12.

The Wereduck Code by Dave Atkinson

The Wereduck Code is a middle-grade novel by author and journalist Dave Atkinson. (Nimbus Publishing Limited, Neal Gillis)

In The Wereduck Code, a 14-year-old human girl named Kate comes from a family of werewolves. But instead of turning into a werewolf when the moon turns full, she turns into a duck. In this third book of Dave Atkinson's Wereduck series, Kate is on a mission to learn more about herself in an attempt to break her family's curse once and for all. But when she takes a DNA test, she learns that her genetic background is more complicated than she thought. It's a twisted tale of shapeshifters, tabloid journalists, computer hackers and more.

The Wereduck Code is for ages 8 to 12.

The Shadows that Rush Past by Rachel Qitsualik-Tinsley, illustrated by Emily Fiegenschuh and Larry MacDougall

The Shadows that Rush Past is a collection of illustrated horror fairy tales written by Rachel Qitsualik-Tinsley. (Inhabit Media)

Nunavut-born Rachel Qitsualik brings together stories from Inuit mythology about four mythical creatures named the amautalik, akhla, nanurluk and mahaha in The Shadows that Rush Past. Featuring vibrant illustrations from Emily Fiegenschuh and Larry MacDougall, the tales of Arctic monsters, ogresses, mutant polar bears are equal parts creepy, scary and a bit gory. 

The Shadows that Rush Past  is for ages 9 to 12.

The Ghost Collector by Allison Mills

The Ghost Collector is a middle-grade novel by Allison Mills. (K. Ho, Annick Press)

The Ghost Collector by Allison Mills is about a young girl named Shelly with an important job. She catches ghosts in her hair and helps them transition to the afterlife. But when Shelly's mom dies, she stops helping the ghosts and starts hoarding them, as she waits for her mother's ghost to arrive. The Ghost Collector is a middle-grade novel inspired by Mills's great-grandmother's life and influenced by her Cree heritage.

The Ghost Collector is for readers aged 10 and up.

Demon by Shane Peacock

Demon is a middle-grade book by Shane Peacock. (Penguin Random House Canada Teen, Kevin Kelly)

Demon is the third book in Shane Peacock's The Dark Missions of Edgar Brim series. Edgar Brim has returned to London and is back at work at the London Hospital. Edgar's experiencing night terrors, and when he decides to do something about them, he realizes they might not all be just in his head.

Peacock is the author of several children's books, including the popular Boy Sherlock Holmes series and the Dylan Maple adventure series.

Demon is for readers aged 12 and up.

Summerwood/Winterwood by E.L. Chen

Summerwood/Winterwood is a YA novel by E.L. Chen. (ChiTeen)

Summerwood/Winterwood contains two linked fantasy stories about a young girl named Rosalind Hero Cheung. The first, Summerwood, begins as 12-year-old Rosalind travels to Toronto to spend the summer with her teenage sister Julie and their grandfather, the author of a famous children's fantasy series. Their stay takes a turn when Julie disappears and Rosalind discovers the dark truth behind the mythical land their grandfather wrote about in his books. Rosalind undertakes a dangerous and costly journey into Summerwood in order to save her sister.

Winterwood picks up three years later. Rosalind has not recovered from her trip to Summerwood and is getting into trouble at school. Grounded by her exasperated mother, Rosalind runs away to Toronto and is confronted by an old enemy from Summerwood.

E.L. Chen is an author and illustrator based in Ontario. Her previous novel, The Good Brother, was published in 2015.

Summerwood/Winterwood is for readers aged 14 and up

Ghosts by David A. Robertson

David A. Robertson is the author of the YA novel Ghosts. (HighWater Press)

Ghosts is the third book in David A. Robertson's Reckoner series following an Indigenous teen named Cole Harper, who returns home after many years away. In GhostsCole is dead and time is running out for Wounded Sky First Nation as Mihko Laboratories, which manufactured an illness that once afflicted the community, has reopened its research facilities.

Ghosts is for ages 12 to 18.

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