THE EXPERIMENTS OF DOCTOR VERMIN

Tim Egan, Author, Tim Egan, Illustrator . Houghton $15 (32p) ISBN 978-0-618-13224-9

In this wry sendup of horror clichés, an affable pig has car trouble in wolf country one dark and stormy Halloween. When he approaches a gloomy mansion for help, a diabolical scientist turns him into a giant. "You're huge, and I'm in complete control of your mind!" Dr. Vermin cackles. "But this was where the evil doctor was wrong." The hero foils Vermin and even overcomes his dread of wolves. Egan (A Mile from Ellington Station) sets a satiric tone with nuanced understatement. His earthy palette exudes firelit warmth, and his pliant, pillowy forms soften the spookiness. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)