Monday, 28 October 2013

All around the house is the jet-black night

All around the house is the jet-black night
It stares through the window-pane; It crawls in the corners, hiding from the light, 
and it moves with the moving flame.


Now my little heart goes a-beating like a drum,with the breath of the Bogie in my hair;
And all round the candle the crooked shadows come and go marching along up the stair.


The shadow of the balusters, the shadow of the lamp, the shadow of the child that goes to bed - all the wicked shadows coming, tramp, tramp, tramp, with the black night overhead.
Robert Louis Stevenson


Featured Books; 


Carbonel by Sleigh Barbara published by Max Parrish in 1966. Carbonel is a Royal cat - and you had better not forget it! He makes it clear to Rosemary and John that they must find the missing steeple hat and cauldron before they can undo the magic spell. And that's just where the trouble, and the fun, begins! Carbonel is now sold, thank you for your interest.





Meg up the Creek by Helen Nicoll with illustrations by Jan Pienkowski, 2002. Meg, Mog and Owl head off in a canoe on a hunting trip, but it doesn’t take long for things to go wrong. First, they forget to tie up the canoe, then they can’t find anything to eat, and to make matters worse they can’t light a fire. Meg resorts to using one of her spells, managing to conjure up a Chinese dragon who lights the fire, provides them with food and flies them all safely home. Now sold, thanks for looking.




Nesta the little witch by Angela McAllister, 1990. At the School for Spells, garbled spells yield ridiculous results so would-be witches must master many things. The only student to show any promise is little Nesta but her cleverness earns the jealous of her teachers, Windbag Wartnose and Morag the Hag.  As the two cackle in the shadows they are gobbled up by a monster (a student project gone awry).  Nesta releases the teachers and helps them clean up, but not without a warning – next time she just might make a mistake “too big for a little witch to fix. Now sold, thanks for looking.




Tog the Ribber or Granny's Tale by Paul Coltman with illustrations by Gillian McClure published in 1985.  Relating the events of a frightening evening when Granny, as a young girl, was chased by Tog the Ribber's vengeful ghost. Each picture shows a new stage in the child's panic, only partly relieved when she crosses the Fozzle ditch and frees herself from her pursuer. 

Pumpkin and Beanpole by Anita McEwen, 1996. Lift the flaps and help Pumpkin and Beanpole unwrap their surprise birthday presents. 

The Bewitched Broomsticks and other stories by Charles Duncan illustrated by A. E. Kennedy published by Faber and Faber in 1947. Nine stories including; The bewitched broomsticks, The clock that made faces, The house with laughing eyes, and Simon in the land of shadows.


Happy Halloween!


Our two little granddaughters waiting for daddy to come home from work. 


Don't open the door daddy, a baby witch is waiting to scare you!


Trick or Treat?
Update July 2016: All the books featured are now sold. March House books closed on my retirement in 2015, but I do still blog here at March of Time Books and always appreciate your visit. 

35 comments:

  1. Perfect reading for Halloween, thanks for sharing.

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    1. Hi Tracy, I agree and thank you for looking.

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  2. Beautiful Halloween post Barbara :)

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  3. Wonderful books for this time of year. Your books always look so inviting and cheerful, even when they are about scary things.

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    1. Hi Alex, they are scary but in a nice kind of way! Thanks for commenting, Barbara.

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  4. OOOh, this reminds me of the scary bedtime stories my mother told me about the witch on a glass mountain. Every collection needs these!

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    1. I wasn’t sure which book you were referring to but a quick Google search came up with the witch family by Eleanor Estes. It sounds like a super story, and most of the reviews on Goodreads are excellent. I can’t believe I’ve never read it – I will have to put that right!

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  5. Replies
    1. Spooky indeed! Thanks for calling in.

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  6. I love thinking of the night crawling through the corners! How spooky!
    -Jamie
    ChatterBlossom

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    1. Hi Jamie,
      Very spooky! I will be hiding under the bedcovers come Halloween!
      Thanks for calling in. Barbara.

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  7. Just what I would have loved. I was convinced my sister was a witch. I'm not entirely sure she wasn't telling the truth.

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    1. Hi Roger, I hope your sister doesn’t read my blog!
      My mum sometimes called me a little witch – how unkind!!!

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  8. Perfect Halloween post! Hope you are staying safe in your spooky weather!

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    1. Hi Diane, it was pretty spooky yesterday, but it’s calmed down today. Thanks for thinking of us and for your comment. Barbara.

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  9. When I was little I was raised uber religiously. I was never allowed to trick or treat and if they had caught me with a book that had witches in it, they would have probably killed me just to save me (slightly over dramatic, but not by much). I missed out on all the great magic books, but I found them as an adult. I have managed to convince my mom that letting my kids read or watch Harry Potter was not going to turn them into witches just as reading the Wall Street Journal has never made me wealthy. I discovered Roald Dahl's books about two years ago and I've been hooked. The Witches is by far one of my favorite books ever!

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    1. Hello Theresa, my goodness that is extreme! We didn’t go trick or treating when I was little, but that was more because it ‘just wasn’t done’ than for religious reasons. Your comment about The Wall Street Journal really made me laugh, but it does prove a point.
      I’ve not read Roald Dahl’s the witches – I must put that right before long. I loved his story about the gremlins and the one about Matilda, and have just read James and the giant peach.
      Thanks so much for calling in, Barbara

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  10. Happy Halloween to you, too! What fun books to help celebrate this fun season. I have read Nesta the Little Witch. I have added the others to my list. Such interesting looking books. :)

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    1. Thanks Stephanie, I'm glad you enjoyed them. Barbara.

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  11. Great Halloween books! I will be a pirate and my black cat will be a - black cat.
    Happy Halloween

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    1. Thanks for making me laugh Darleen! Happy Halloween

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  13. Good morning dear, dear Barbara! It took me a while to come to your post as my new job is really keeping me occupied! And thank you for coming to my post; my mother died 27 years ago, this poem was written maybe 3 weeks ago, and I had blogger issues when I published it, so I'm not sure it is was the best choice for some readers, but it's all I had to post. But I do appreciate kind friends like you coming to read what I have.

    I love these choices today but I am not familiar with any of them! The covers alone suggest that they are charming and enchanting in a great way to quickly become anyone's favorite - at any age!

    THANK YOU AGAIN my dear friend! Anita

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    1. Dear Anita, I don’t know where you find the time to write such super blog posts and to visit with all your blogging friends. I find myself sitting up later and later each evening just trying to catch up with all the things that should have been done earlier in the day. However, I wouldn't change it for the world; my blog has given me the opportunity to meet so many lovely people – just like you!
      I really enjoyed the post about your mother you painted all the pictures I needed to see.
      Take care and try not to work too hard. Barbara xxx

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  14. I adore spooky children's books.
    Meg and Mog are firm favourites :)

    I love that your post began with R L Stevenson's words.
    Jekyll and Hyde is currently in the 'Halloween Reading' stack next to my bed.

    Have a lovely day Barbara :)

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    1. Hi Yvonne, Jekyll and Hyde is the perfect read for Halloween – enjoy!
      Thanks very much for calling in, I hope you have a lovely day too!

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  15. Oh! So many witches here!! (bruja is the Spanish word for witch, and sometimes we use it in a figurative or funny way, speaking about some friends -women- talking a lot, or gossiping...you know...).
    A few years ago no one knew Halloween here, it is now known, but not as much as in English-speaking countries
    I love visiting blogs with so many creative and inspiring ideas por deco in a Halloween mood.
    Besos and Happy Halloween!

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    1. Hello Silvina, yes I do know what you mean; we sometimes use it the same way! Halloween was hardly mentioned when I was a little girl, but it has become big business now.
      Thank you for your kind wishes and a very Happy Halloween to you too.

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  16. A wonderful collection of spooky books! I remember Meg, Mog and Owl from my childhood :)

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    1. Thanks Nikki-ann, I'm glad you enjoyed them.

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  17. Love the girls' costumes! Hope all of you have a delightfully spooky one, Barbara. Oh, and I have a vague recollection of Tog the Ribber. I think you told me about that story previously and it's wonderful to be intrigued by it again. Happy Halloween!

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    1. Well remembered Claudine. I like that you are paying attention! hee hee
      Don’t the girls look splendid? They live in Australia so for them Halloween was last night, hence they were all dressed up and waiting for daddy.
      Happy Halloween to you too, I hope you enjoy it whatever you do.

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  18. Their costumes are so well-done, makeup and all! Quite eerie, those opening lines.

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara xx

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