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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Ollie's Halloween, written and illustrated by Olivier Dunrea. Houghton, T Allen. 2010. $15.99 ages 2 and up

"Hooting like owls.
Howling like wolves.
Creeping through bogs.
Scaring frogs.
Gossie and Gertie poke
around the pumpkins.
Peedie and Boo creep
behind the beehives."

You may be familiar with Gossie and Gertie. If not, you should meet them. For Halloween the two little goslings have donned simple costumes and are ready for the big night out. Gossie is a wizard, needing only a pointy, starry hat, a star necklace and red boots. Gertie is a chicken with blue boots, leaves for tail feathers and a red rubber glove atop her head. Their friends, Peedie, BooBoo and Ollie are with them so as not to miss all the fun! Ollie is a tiny, adorable mummy.

None looks particularly excited to be out on this scary, bewarey night. However, they are 'on the prowl'. They do all those things that make Halloween so special for little ones. They hoot and howl, creep and scare. Ollie is always a little bit behind...and alone.

Olivier Dunrea is so adept at creating characters who exhibit the concerns of his intended audience. His watercolor art is detailed, expressive and affords readers a chance to observe the goings-on of the group. The simple text perfectly complements the art and creates yet another chapter in the Gertie and Gossie lifelong adventure. Fun!

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