Tuesday, October 12, 2010

19 days to halloween

this book, the halloween kid [simon and schuster; 2010], written and illustrated by rhode montijo, might not become a classic but it is an utter delight to read and to look at. it's become a favorite here at casa del lopez/bronson and nicholas and i've been reading it together nearly every night since we bought a copy last month.

montijo taps into a child's sense of wonder and consequence while also messaging an adult's peaked nostalgia for in this book a masked stranger saves an unnamed community from all the creepy crawlies that would jeopardize halloween, particularly that explicit candy gathering ritual called trick-or-treating.

what gets me are the cool illustrations grounded in blacks and oranges. montijo hearkens to old-style comic book illustrations from the 1950s. but the work is, at least to my eye, not the least dated. rather, the halloween kid, the trick-or-treaters, and the bad guys that would ruin halloween, live in a neverland that rewards repeated visits.

the language montijo employs in telling his story is sorta old-skool, aw shucks, b-movie western. it works just fine and each time i read the book i seem to take on a very silly, and rather affected, ranch-style drawl. nicholas doesn't seem to mind.

this is a wonderful book. perfect for pumpkin day.

happy halloween!


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