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by Kevin Lewis & illustrated by S.D. Schindler

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-439-43974-4
Publisher: Scholastic

Lewis and Schindler transform a tale usually associated with Thanksgiving into a “thumpety bumpety thumpin’ bumpin’ round and roll-y” Halloween disaster-in-the-making, narrowly averted by some quick thinking and ending with a hilarious twist. Three children find a huge pumpkin at the top of a hill and cut it loose, with predictable results—but after smashing through one fence after another it comes to rest in Poppa’s hastily plowed field, and everyone rolls it home with visions of Granny’s pumpkin pie, bread, and soup in their heads. Schindler rolls his gigantic missile through autumn scenes done in harmonizing oranges and browns, dresses the entire family in costume, and, after Granny does indeed cook up a storm in the kitchen, places everyone around the dinner table—including the still-intact pumpkin, now a grinning jack-o’-lantern. Lewis shows an all-too-common tendency to drop or add syllables to his rhymed lines at random, but he expertly captures the rumbling drama of the pumpkin’s descent, and sets up the punch line perfectly. (Picture book. 6-8)