It’s Halloween, Chloe Zoe!
In this sixth book in Smith’s holiday-themed Chloe Zoe series, the returning heroine, a yellow elephant, is excited about Halloween but uncertain about trick-or-treating at the “old, creepy house on the corner,” where she heard an “evil witch” lives. Smith’s collages are far more festive than frightening, and although Chloe Zoe runs away scared when her friends visit the house she’s afraid of, her fears are quickly allayed: its resident, Mrs. Elena, is a cheerful rabbit who is handing out giant candy bars—trick-or-treating gold, as any kid knows. Chloe Zoe’s candid and enthusiastic narration makes this a good choice for Halloween newbies (she walks readers through the basics of the holiday as the story opens). Though the emotional conflicts are laid out somewhat blatantly, the book could easily lead into conversations about fear in general, real dangers versus imagined ones, and unfounded rumors. Ages 4–8. Agent: Nicole Tugeau, T2 Children’s Illustrators. (Aug.)