The new kid in town has more trouble than most fitting in.
Boo is new, and while it might seem as though it would be easy for a ghost to fit in among a T. Rex, a robot, a monster, and a unicorn rabbit, it isn’t. They are friendly enough and include him in the games they play, but for reasons that aren’t explicitly stated, only pictured, he has trouble. The ball bounces through him during a game of “bounce-ball.” He has no hands with which to play “pick-up twigs.” And his friends can’t feel it when he tags them. The four are an empathetic bunch and continue to try to find new games to play each time, but Boo can’t help but have a pity party as he wonders if anyone would notice if he just disappeared. But just then he notices they’ve begun a game that’s perfect for him—one that allows him to succeed and even dominate. Hooray for new friends who persevere! Clanton’s ink, pencil, watercolor, and digital illustrations employ an off-white background so readers can easily see the white-sheeted ghost. But this background changes to white when Boo is feeling sorry for himself and during the final game, emphasizing his problem, which also turns out to be his strength. Boo and his new pals are all expressive, especially the enthusiastic Rex.
A great example for both new kids and those welcoming them—at Halloween or for the rest of the year. (Picture book. 3-7)