A review of The Halloween House (Riley Cain, Currach Books, 2020) by Michelle Holst (Ms Toast) also on Twitter


Dear gruesome grown-ups,

This terrifying teacher has a message for you and the chilling children in your lives.

For many years I have been searching for something, to make Halloween a spooktacular sensation and The Halloween House by Riley Cain has provided, the perfect inspiration. Such a frightfully fun-filled collection, of Halloween poetry.With one funny bone-chilling poem a day,for you and little monsters to see. I know that children of primary school age will definitely delight, in these roguish rhymes created, for each of the October nights. So, for a book that surely will bring families (and classes) closer, read only one poem per night and you are guaranteed laughter!

It is very difficult to not write the entire review in rhyme but such is the effect of this awfully amazing collection of poetry. This sense of fun and whimsy is prevalent in Halloween House. It is truly a unique idea having a poem a day for this time of year and I am delighted to have discovered it. Riley manages to delight children, young and old with pee and snot, while still creating wonderous rhymes and crafty descriptions. He discusses monsters old and new but makes them approachable and something to be enjoyed. The way he wrote these poems leaves it open for children to predict the end of the next couplet, allowing them to join in with the reading.Great for home and school! The illustrations conjured by the poems are incredibly vivid. The children have adored imagining each one and reflect them through their own Art. It must be mentioned too, that the illustrators, all nine of them, are of the highest talent and I am thankful that I can share their colourful and vibrant images with my class. However, they could be enjoyed even more at home!

And now for the kids…

 Dear children of Ireland,

October is here

And it is the spookiest time of year

Where the ghosts and ghoulies float about

Witches and vampires scream and shout!


So, if you want to learn about things that go boo!

Here is the perfect book for you

It’s full of poems and hilarious rhymes

Pick up Halloween House for these spooky times!


What a joy to be able to add this to my collection of Halloween themed books and I am certain that this book will become a tradition in many homes as each October returns.

Enjoy and be safe

Ms Toast (the terrible)