Nothing says Halloween like witches. These books are perfect for kids who love a good scare. J. A. White loves witches and two of his books appear on this list. Roald Dahl’s book is the classic. Kelly Barnhill wrote the Newbery winner. You can’t go wrong with these Halloween picks.
The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill
Each year an infant is left in the woods as a sacrifice for the witch. Each year she shows up to rescue the infant. She has no idea why helpless children are abandoned. She usually feeds the child starlight, but this year she makes a mistake and feeds her moonlight. This produces a magic so strong that she decides to raise the child herself. Strong plot and characters.
The Thickety: A Path Begins by J.A. White
In De’Noran, witches are hanged. Such was the fate of Kara’s mother. When chasing a bird into the forbidden forest, Kara finds her mother’s grimoire, a book of spells. The pages are blank, but a witch can think a spell onto the page. Kara has her mother’s ability, but so does her nemesis Grace whose father wants to destroy all witches.
NightBooks by J. A. White
There’s a witch living in Alex’s apartment building and she kidnaps children. Alex is her next victim. Each night he is forced to read a scary story from his personal notebooks. Soon he will run out of stories. He must write new ones or risk being turned into a figurine on the shelf like the children before him.
The Witches by Roald Dahl
Luke and his grandmother are staying at the same hotel where a witch convention is being held. It’s hard to tell a witch from an ordinary person, but one thing is for sure. They hate children. The head witch has concocted a formula that will turn children into mice. Luke concocts his own plan to stop them. A timeless classic that remains one of the best witch stories for children.
Took by Mary Downing Hahn
When Daniel’s dad lost his posh corporate job, he moved the family to a poor town in West Virginia. As if the culture shock isn’t enough, the old house they bought is giving off bad vibes. The girl who lived there 50 years ago went missing, supposedly kidnapped by a witch. Now his sister is missing and it’s up to Daniel to save her. Hahn is queen of scary for kids.
The Door by the Staircase by Katherine Marsh
Mary, an orphan, thinks she’s lucky when she gets adopted by Madam Z. Things are a little strange, but overall not bad. Then the stable hand informs her that Madam Z is a witch who eats children. Madam Z has grown fond of Mary and agrees not to eat her. Mary remains suspicious, but it’s the stable hand who turns on her. Based on the Russian fairytale of Baba Yaga.
Nightmares! By Jason Segel
Charlie has always liked the purple mansion on the hill, but never wanted to live there. Now his dad has remarried and his stepmother owns the house. They move in and Charlie is having nightmares about a witch. He’s convinced his stepmother is a witch. When he crosses over into the Netherworld, where nightmares live, he finds out that his stepmother has nothing to do with his nightmares.
The Last Apprentice: Revenge of the Witch by Joseph Delaney
Tom is the 7thson of a 7thson. His destiny is to be a Spook’s apprentice. His job is to rid the countryside of witches and ghosts. His first mistake is accidentally freeing the witch buried in the Spook’s yard. His second mistake is killing her, enabling her spirit to possess people. A dark, spooky book boys will like too.
The Lunch Witch by Deb Lucke (Graphic Novel)
When Brunhilda gets fired, the only job she can find is in a school cafeteria. Since brewing up potions is her specialty, this turns out to be the perfect job. But there’s a student who suspects her true identity. Brunhilda is worried that if she doesn’t give the girl what she wants, she may blow her cover. Graphic novel format.