Read The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury Online


"A fast-moving, eerie...tale set on Halloween night. Eight costumed boys running to meet their friend Pipkin at the haunted house outside town encounter instead the huge and cadaverous Mr. Moundshroud. As Pipkin scrambles to join them, he is swept away by a dark Something, and Moundshroud leads the boys on the tail of a kite through time and space to search the past for th"A fast-moving, eerie...tale set on Halloween night. Eight costumed boys running to meet their friend Pipkin at the haunted house outside town encounter instead the huge and cadaverous Mr. Moundshroud. As Pipkin scrambles to join them, he is swept away by a dark Something, and Moundshroud leads the boys on the tail of a kite through time and space to search the past for their friend and the meaning of Halloween. After witnessing a funeral procession in ancient Egypt, cavemen discovering fire, Druid rites, the persecution of witches in the Dark Ages, and the gargoyles of Notre Dame, they catch up with the elusive Pipkin in the catacombs of Mexico, where each boy gives one year from the end of his life to save Pipkin's. Enhanced by appropriately haunting black-and-white drawings."--Booklist...

Title : The Halloween Tree
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780375803017
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 145 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Halloween Tree Reviews

  • Dan Schwent
    2019-05-01 13:10

    When their friend Pipkin is snatched away, his eight friends, with the mysterious Mr. Moundshroud, go looking for him, crossing time and space and learning all about Halloween.Apart from some of his short stories, I've never ready any Bradbury. Since we're on the cusp of Halloween, I gave this a shot.This is a cute, fun story. Mr. Moundshroud teaches the boys about Halloween across the ages while they look for their missing friend Pipkin. There aren't a lot of childrens' books that reference druids, mummies, witches, gargoyles, and the day of the dead. It brought back memories of Halloweens past for me.The prose is poetic and flows like water from a hose. Some of it has an almost Doctor Seussian flair. I'm not surprised there's an animated version. The book screams to be a cartoon.Bradbury's influence on later authors can be felt in this one. I notice some phrasing that Stephen King has echoed but the writing shouted Neil Gaiman at me. Coraline, The Graveyard Book, practically all of Gaiman's prose owes a debt to Ray Bradbury. Hell, The Sandman probably also has some Bradbury in his family tree.I probably missed the window for perfect enjoyment of this book by decades. Even so, I enjoyed it quite a bit. 3.5 out of 5 stars. Now I really want to track down the animated version. Leonard Nimoy as Mr. Moundshroud!

  • Lyn
    2019-05-09 08:12

    The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury is a short novel by the grandmaster that uses as a premise a group of trick or treating boys traveling through time chasing a mysteriously missing friends to create a vehicle for examining the roots and sources of Halloween. Probably written for a juvenile or young adult audience, Bradbury demonstrates his range and imagination to craft a story that is as entertaining as any of his more recognized works. The character Moundshroud, most likely as a personification of Death, is certainly a memorable Bradbury creation.

  • Candi
    2019-05-16 09:57

    This was a fun and quirky read for Halloween. Ray Bradbury has a great way of painting a myriad of images in his writing. I adored the illustrations by Joseph Mugnaini! When I started this book, I was hooked immediately and thought this was going to be my 5 star Halloween book for the year. "The wind outside nested in each tree, prowled the sidewalks in invisible treads like unseen cats. Tom Skelton shivered. Anyone could see that the wind was a special wind this night, and the darkness took on a special feel because it was All Hallows' Eve. Everything seemed cut from soft black velvet or gold or orange velvet. Smoke panted up out of a thousand chimneys like the plumes of funeral parades." I had an awesome feeling of nostalgia as the story was set up and the boys dressed in their costumes and prepared themselves for a night of thrills and adventure. Meeting at the haunted house on the outskirts of town, the boys realize that one of their own, the magnificent Pipkin, is in danger. In order to save him, they must travel back in time with the frightfully fantastic Mr. Moundshroud. Here the reader journeys and learns about the history of Halloween through the ages and across the continents right along with this pack of boys. I thought this was a very clever idea. However, it was at this point that I lost a bit of interest in the story. Too much information was thrown at me too quickly and everything became a bit too chaotic! I wanted to sit back and really learn a bit more about each place and time, but before I knew it, I was rushed on to the next! Well, I'm glad to say I have finally read this book, and I am not sorry that I did - it certainly provided some entertainment. I just wish I could regurgitate some of what I learned about Halloween, but I'm afraid Mr. Moundshroud's grandiose efforts were a bit lost on me!

  • Bradley
    2019-05-13 05:47

    Mr. Moundshroud proves to be a delightfully light (read leaves on the wind) Virgil as he takes a group of kids on a roaring fast ride through time on Hallow's Eve to give us the "real" rundown on mummies, witches, druids, and all the creepy crawlies of history, summing things up with a quintessential Bradburian moral *and* prosaic reveal.It's perfect for what it is: a totally fast YA ride that might get even better justice as a full production Spielberg production with a gazillion dollars behind it, with Disney and Lucasfilms playing a big role, with Neil Gaiman providing about a thousand hours worth of consultancy to boot. Sound good? Yep! It needs a lot of firepower to amp it up and make it look absolutely spectacular and feel like it has the depth of ages. It feels like Mary Poppins and Bednobs and Broomsticks would if they were actually good movies. And maybe it could be an excellent movie, too!But for me, I feel like I should have loved this long before I ever watched Nightmare Before Christmas.It's all about timing. At my late age, I want to start taking exception to some of the conclusions that Bradbury makes, nitpick about the history, complain about the lack of girls, and give a horribly injust condemnation to the book because it lacks the whole modern Halloween and horror awesomeness that us moderns have to offer.For shame! Shame on me!But then, that's also the reason why I mentioned bringing in a bunch of the heavy hitters of today to update the tale. I'm sure THIS is one of those old books that could be turned into something special again for a whole new generation. It already has magic. :)

  • Maciek
    2019-05-11 11:16

    This book and I have a history, and one which I wasn't even aware of until I have actually read it. Years and years ago, I saw an opening snippet of a Halloween movie on Cartoon Network - it was October and they had Halloween-themed cartoons running all day long, from the Addams Family to special episodes of Scooby Doo...but this one caught my attention: it was a full length animation, and the opening scene featured a bird's eye view on a small town, where dusk had just began to fall, and the skies were fiery red. For some reason I didn't get to watch the rest of it, and for years remembered just this image of burning red sky and a sense of autumnal mystery - I couldn't find the title of this film as all this happened when the internet was still in its infancy. But this image had never completely left my mind, and after reading this book something in the back of my head urged me to see if it was ever adapted for the screen - and lo and behold, I learned that in 1993 Hanna-Barbera has turned it into a feature-length animated film, written and narrated by Bradbury himself, and it was since often shown on Cartoon Network during Halloween. I even saw the opening on YouTube, and it matches what I remember almost to the letter.Can you believe? After so many years I've finally found my long forgotten cartoon, which as a boy I thought I'd never see again (for some reason it didn't occur to me to just look for it a year later - perhaps because after October and Winter arrived Summer, which at this age was like beginning to live in a completely new world). I'm older now, but that boy is still there somewhere within me, and he is very happy. Special thanks go to Ziba for introducing me to this book and urging me to read it - thank you! :)The Halloween Tree is another of Ray Bradbury's ode to youth and boyhood - and a true Halloween special. Bradbury wrote in simple but elegant language, and his words are filled with nostalgia for the earlier, simpler time of youth and childhood, and the sense of mystery and adventure which were all around when the days turned shorter and colder, leaves fell from the trees and whispers of ghosts began to circulate. Eight friends dress up in Halloween costumes - there's the skeleton, a mummy, a witch, even Mr. Death himself - but they're missing the group favorite and their leader, Pipkin; he looks unwell, but has never missed a Halloween and tells them that he will meet up with them as they go on. The group arrives at a mysterious Gothic mansion with a gigantic tree hung with Jack-O-Lanterns; they discover that the house is inhabited by an equally mysterious man named Moundshroud. Just then Pipkin appears, but is snatched away from them by unknown forces and dragged into the dark, unknown space; Mr. Moundshroud invites the group on a strange journey through time and across the world, the only chance to save their friend.The structure is similar to Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, where Ebenezer Scrooge is taken by various ghost to experience the Past, the Present, and the Yet To Come - but AChristmas Carol is a story of another season and another man, focused solely on Scrooge and his relationship with others. The Halloween Tree, while giving plenty of attention to Pipkin, is focused much more on Halloween and its origins - from the ancient traditions of the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, through the Celts and the medieval times in Britain and France, to the Mexican Día de Muertos. Civilizations which created these customs have long since disappeared, but their tradition survived and influenced the holiday and its celebration, and are all elements of this story.Joe Mugnaini illustrations are delightful and I wish there were more of them. Still, I think that The Halloween Tree is a story which would shine when listened to - as told by someone who understands autumn and Halloween and cares about both deeply, and delights in telling stories to an engaged audience of young and old children. It's a short novella which can be read in one sitting, but paints a great tribute to the season - the warmth of summer and its lush green disappeared, but in their place arrived mystery and the multitude of sensations which you can't experience at any other time of the year. I don't think anyone can dislike this book, but I think plenty of us autumn people will end enjoying it greatly.

  • Kenny
    2019-04-30 05:55

    I have a tradition of reading Charles Dickens every December. It may be a short story or a full length novel, but December is meant for Dickens. After having read The Halloween Tree, I have decided that I will now read Ray Bradbury every October. October is meant for Bradbury.There is a lot to love about this book ~~ The Halloween Tree is the story of eight friends on Halloween trying to find their missing ring leader Pipkin. The search leads them to an old, dark, Gothic, haunted house with a tree covered in lit jack-o-lanterns, the Halloween tree. It is here we meet Moundshroud who offers to help them find Pipkin, but they need to learn the truth about Halloween first. From here, we are given a tour of Halloween and Halloween-like celebrations from around the world, from Ancient Egypt to modern-day Mexico.Bradbury is a masterful storyteller. What is amazing here is Bradbury takes the concept of death and the ending of one’s own life from a personal to a worldly discussion. More than that, we learn what it is like to live and grow and about the fluidity of life. Not an easy task to be sure.There is so much more I could say here, but I don't want to spoil this for others. This is a book to read and reread many times. I consider The Halloween Tree a classic and a wonderful surprise for me.

  • Trish
    2019-05-17 12:11

    It's big, it's broad ...It's broad, it's bright ...It fills the sky of All Hallow's Night ...The strangest sight you've ever seen.The monster Tree on Halloween.The leaves have burned to gold and redThe grass is brown, the old year dead,But hang the harvest high, Oh see!The candle constellations on the Halloween Tree!The stars they turn, the candles burnAnd the mouse-leaves scurry on the cold wind bourne,And a mob of smiles shine down on theeFrom the gourds hung high on the Halloween Tree.The smile of the Witch, and the smile of the Cat,The smile of the Beast, the smile of the Bat,The smile of the Reaper taking his feeAll cut and glimmer on the Halloween Tree..."October has always been my favourite time of year. The autumn colours, the usually sunny but fresh air - it all looks and feels so cozy. At some point I also heard about Halloween or All Hallow's Eve (it wasn't celebrated here for a long time) and it has quickly become my favourite "holiday" of the year. Carving pumpkins, using hundreds of candles, watching and reading spooky movies and stories ... there is just a special atmosphere about it.Nevertheless, despite what many cynics say, this is not a holiday invented by the sugar industry. All Hallows Eve has had many names throughout the centuries and was (still is, in fact) celebrated all over the world and always for the same reason: the fear of darkness and hope for the light (sun) to come back. In fact, many years ago, November 1st used to be New Year's!This book is full of the energy of children running around, playing in heaps of leaves, trick-or-treating, carving pumpkins and laughing all the while. Bradbury seems to have many different voices, depending on what kind of story he's telling, and this is one of pure joy. The book tells of Halloween, its history throughout time and space, and of hope and friendship through the children that need to save their friend with the help of the mysterious Mr. Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud (his identity is in the name). He takes them on a journey to learn about human history, the history of darkness vs light, fear vs hope, to make them see ... well, find out for yourselves.This book has so many great messages. From what witches really are, to the fate of any form of belief (even if it has become one of the biggest religions in all the world), to cultural differences that still tell of the commonalities, to the value of a human life. And all with this incredible charm and vitality, perfectly capturing the spirit of Halloween!Accompanying this great tale are wonderful black-and-white illustrations by Joseph Mugnaini.I cannot even adequately put in words what this little book means to me. I think I shall read it every October from now on. It's THAT GOOD, invoking the spirit of autumn in general and Halloween especially. Just the right amount of childish joy for all things spooky (because make no mistake: there is enough spookiness in this) as well as intelligent excursions into dark and deep topics. Trick and treat indeed!

  • Paul O'Neill
    2019-04-25 12:11

    I'll be reading more Bradbury!The writing in this is phenomenal, it's delight to read. I'm not sure why, but the images in my head when reading this were very Tim Burton-esque. What are some of his other works that I should check out? Besides Fahreinheit 451 that is...

  • Johann (jobis89)
    2019-05-17 08:50

    "There must have been a thousand pumpkins on this tree, hung high and on every branch. A thousand smiles. A thousand grimaces."Eight young boys learn about the origin stories of Halloween with the help of a mysterious character called Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud. However, their friend, Pipkin, has been whisked away and the friends will have an important decision to make with regards to whether he lives or dies.This is one of those children's books that can still be enjoyed as an adult. It's nostalgic, heartfelt and a whole lot of fun! Moundshroud helps the children travel through space and time to teach them about the origin of Halloween, from Ancient Egyptian traditions to The Day of the Dead in Mexico. Bradbury's prose is poetic and beautiful, and his descriptions of both Halloween and autumn are mesmerising.There's also beautiful illustrations in my edition by Joe Mugnaini (not sure if they're in all editions), but they're a lovely addition to the story.My only negative really is that at times it felt a bit rushed as Moundshroud and the children moved around from each place. I felt like I wanted to spend more time in each location and learn even more! But I guess the story is meant to be fast-paced and keep you on your toes. This is a fun Halloween read and I'm excited for more Bradbury!

  • Gregor Xane
    2019-04-28 13:57

    I often find Ray Bradbury's writing a bit precious. At some point in his career it seems to me that he became more concerned with being a GREAT AUTHOR than simply telling a great story. And, yes, I felt that way sometimes while listening to The Halloween Tree.BUT...And that's a rather large 'BUT.'But, with The Halloween Tree he did manage to pull off the gorgeous poetic prose, the grand imagery, while telling a wonderful story. I don't use the word 'wonderful' often in a serious manner, but here it fits. There seems to be no other word to describe this book.Every word seems perfectly chosen, each sentence, paragraph, and scene, meticulously crafted to evoke the spirit of Halloween and the feeling of being a young boy.I listened to Bronson Pinchot's excellent narration, Bradbury's hypnotic meditation on death and rebirth, and let the grandest Halloween vistas build and burn in my mind, endlessly reforming and shattering, reassembling and disintegrating, painting themselves over and over, only to be washed away a thousand times. I cannot imagine a book that more perfectly captures the soul of the holiday.Don't even ask me what price I'd pay to be a boy again, running wild through the streets with my older brothers on Halloween night. I'm afraid of what my answer might be.Highest possible recommendation!

  • Mariah
    2019-05-14 06:53

    I struggled a lot with how this book was written, because of that I had a hard time following alone with what was going on. I plan on watching the movie though, and I hope I enjoy that wayyy more!

  • Murat Dural
    2019-05-20 09:03

    Bir günde okudum. Kafamı kaldıramadım bile. Tek gecelik Cadılar Bayramı bu kadar fantastik, çocuksu, heyecanlı ve korkutucu anlatılabilir. Tim Burton'ın filmlerinden birinde kayboldum adeta. Her zaman ki akıcı Ray Bradbury dili, merak, kuşku, tedirginlik. Sizi yerinize mıhlayan bir anlatım. Kitap bittiğinde başlarkenkinden daha fazla düşünce, ihtimal, renk, doku. Çok zengin bir hayali güç. Bayıldım.

  • Darwin8u
    2019-04-27 05:47

    “Suddenly the day was gone, night came out from under each tree and spread.” ― Ray Bradbury, The Halloween TreeIt was nice to read this and remember that before Stranger Things and before Neil Gaiman there was Ray Bradbury. Not one of his greats. The plot seemed a bit too contrived. But how can you not adore a book that transports you from Egypt, to Greece, to Rome, to Druid England, to the top of Notre Dame, to Mexico celebrating Día De Los Muertos? The Halloween Tree is an obvious metaphor for the stemma of traditions that bleed down into what is today Halloween. Bradbury does seem to be everywhere I go at Halloween. I see him when I read Neil Gaiman, when I watch Stranger Things, when I look at Mugnaini art (and Mugnaini's decendants: see Burton/Selick's Nightmare Before Christmas), when I listen to Danny Elfman & Oingo Boingo.Anyway, I'm also amazed going back to Ray Bradbury how much poetry there is in his prose. He was one of those storytellers who can't help but write beyond most of his audience. I only now have REALLY started to appreciate how wonderful a writer Bradbury is. That is one of the reasons I'm going back and reading a lot of his novels. The guy can WRITE.

  • Jenny (Reading Envy)
    2019-05-02 07:57

    This was a fun little Halloween read, about a three hour audiobook read by Bronson Pinchot. It starts with a bunch of 11-12 year old boys on Halloween night, assembling for trick-or-treating, and veers off into a boys adventure novel that also has elements of American Gods. I loved the Halloween tree and will look for one this year. :)

  • Coos Burton
    2019-05-24 05:55

    Cuando era más chica, "The Halloween Tree" era una de mis películas favoritas para ver durante el mes de Octubre. Recuerdo sentarme en un sillón mullido y no despegar la vista del televisor hasta que la película terminara. Algo así me sucedió cuando decidí leer este libro. Demoré la lectura para poder disfrutarlo en ésta época, ya que tenía deseos de leerlo apenas pude encontrarlo, pero realmente creía que necesitaba saborearlo ahora. No me arrepiento de ello, a medida que leía algunos recuerdos se me venían a la cabeza y los ojos se me humedecían (si, así de sentimental). Estaba segura de que iba a terminar siendo uno de mis libros favoritos, y no le erré. Moundshroud es un personaje siniestro y carismático que guía a un grupo de chicos en un viaje histórico que recordarán por el resto de sus vidas. Los alienta a enfrentarse a aquello que creían conocer, y les muestra un lado que no conocían del Halloween y de las criaturas que encarnan en la noche de truco o trato. Sin duda, una aventura asombrosa que me alegra haber leído.Lo disfruté tanto que sinceramente me gustaría que todo el mundo se diera la oportunidad de leerlo, más ahora, aprovechando que estamos a pocos días de Halloween. Es un libro hermoso, dotado de muchísima información sobre historia, todo bellamente plasmado con una rica descripción para cada situación. Por momentos, realmente sentía que volaba con la cometa, que era un personaje más observando todo desde un rincón.

  • Wayne Barrett
    2019-05-07 06:10

    At my age I can no longer climb trees like a monkey or sail through the air, leaping over hedges as I sprint down the street. At least, not physically. But because of writers like Ray Bradbury, I can still do these things in my mind. I can escape into the far reaches of my mind and become a boy again, leaping, running... and being able to lose myself in the innocence of fantasy and make-believe. This is a great adventure and glimpse into the heart of All Hallows Eve. And it is done masterfully through the eyes of 8 boys who have donned their costumes, let go of reality and courageously plunged into darkness to aid a friend and to discover what it means to seek a treat that just might be a trick.

  • Mariana
    2019-05-08 06:58

    Si tuviera que elegir una lectura clásica para el día de brujas, una que leyera cada año alrededor de una fogata, definitivamente sería este libro. La pluma de Ray Bradbury nos ofrece una narración macabra pero ingeniosa, enrtretenida y a la vez ilustrativa. Para quienes no lo sepan, The Halloween Tree, es la historia de un grupo de niños que durante la noche del 31 de octubre emprenden un viaje a través del tiempo y del espacio, mientras observan y participan en diversas tradiciones que tienen que ver con la festividad de los muertos.Egipto, Gran Bretaña, Italia, Francia y México son algunos de los lugares que -de la mano de su misterioso guía- el grupo recorre para observar las maneras de conmemorar a los difuntos. Sin embargo, esta obra no es meramente un recorrido cultural; mientras el viaje transcurre, los niños están intentando salvar a uno de sus amigos de un peligro inminente.Bradbury nos presenta un clásico con tintes algo infantiles pero siempre macabros, tal como la celebración a la cual está dedicada el libro. Aquí están presentes los elementos de diversas tradiciones y mitologías pero a la vez, el autor nos ofrece una nueva leyenda, un nuevo personaje que se suma al folklore de la festividad: Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud y su árbol iluminado con miles de calabazas.

  • Alex Telander
    2019-04-29 14:08

    THE HALLOWEEN TREE BY RAY BRADBURY: I read this book every October because it’s the perfect Halloween book. It’s taken me a couple of readings, but I now finally realize that The Halloween Tree is the equivalent for Halloween what A Christmas Carol is for Christmas: an enchanting journey into the history of Halloween where one leans much and is changed by it.A group of eight boys are on their way out to trick or treat on Halloween, all in different costumes – skeleton, mummy, gargoyle, etc. – and head over to the final friend’s house, Pipkin. Pipkin is sick, doesn’t look well at all, but is essentially the leader of the group and has never missed a Halloween, so he tells them to go on ahead to a specific house and he will catch up with them.The house turns out to be the quintessential Halloween mansion, with many rooms and black windows. Beside the mansion they find a great and ancient oak with many branches and hanging from those branches are many carved pumpkins, swinging in the breeze. This is the Halloween tree, and as the boys watch, each of the pumpkins light up. At the door they ask for trick or treat, and the man on the other side tells them not treat, but trick. Terrifyingly, he appears from a pile of leaves. He is tall. He is skeletal. He is Mr. Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud. After the boys get over the initial terror, they are invited on a journey by Mr. Moundshroud. They see Pipkin being taken into the past, weakened by his sickness, and it is up to Moundshroud and the boys to rescue Pipkin from time. And so the boys begin their journey, forming the tail of a giant kite controlled by Moundshroud and they pass back through time and visit the Halloweens of history: Ancient Egypt, Rome, Greece, medieval Britain, Notre Dame, and El Dia de Los Muertos. It is an incredible story where one learns the history of Halloween seen through the eyes of many different cultures, told in the unique style of Ray Bradbury. Afterwards you will feel as if you’ve actually experienced many different Halloweens and be all the more ready to experience your own on October 31st.For more book reviews, and author interviews, go to BookBanter.

  • James
    2019-05-04 11:56

    this limited edition version of bradbury's halloween tree that was printed in 2004 is absolutely the version worth reading, entirely for the inclusion of his first submitted typescript. see, knopf was interested in a straight-up juvenile book. bradbury wanted to write "a book for children of all ages." so, when the first knopf edition was published in 1972, there were a ton of cuts, largely to bradbury's wonderful descriptive passages. also included are a ton of supplemental materials, including correspondence with chuck jones (with whom bradbury was working to create a rival to "it's the great pumpkin, charlie brown"), international dust jacket illustrations, interviews with the author, his original screenplay, the teleplay of the 1992 animated version, and bradbury's working draft. there's also a table of the differences between all of the versions, and a bunch of notes on the edits, explaining certain choices and why certain edits were made.anyway, this is bradbury's ode to halloween and childhood, the tale of eight 12-year-old boys who go on a journey to discover the history of halloween as well as save the ninth member of their group from taking that final journey to "the unknown country." it's filled with nostalgia, adventure, and bradbury's contagious love of all hallow's. definitely recommended.

  • Char
    2019-05-08 06:59

    I listened to this story so as to participate in the Literary Horror Group's October read. I have long been planning to read more of Ray Bradbury's work, so I jumped on this opportunity. (Mostly thanks to Edward Lorn through whose contest I won the audiobook version. Thanks again, Ed!)I enjoyed this fanciful tale even though it wasn't a bit scary. In fact, I would categorize this as more of a dark fantasy, though labels are just labels, in the end. As was true of the 2 other Bradbury stories I've read, the prose was flat out amazing. The man knew how to string words together in the most fantastic of ways. That being said, I wasn't that impressed with the tale itself. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it, but I felt that it was written more for pre-teens or teenagers than adults. It seemed to have a purpose behind it that would have made it a perfect read for junior high school. I know that Mr. Moundshroud would have fascinated me as a teenager. He fascinated me, even now. Bronson Pinchot's narration did the story justice, I believe, especially where Moundshroud's voice was concerned.All in all, I would recommend this story-most especially to younger readers and to readers that are still young at heart. There is a message here to be learned, but even if you don't "get" the moral, you still have a wildly imaginative tale to enjoy.

  • Jess
    2019-05-15 09:05

    This will most definitely be an October read for me around Halloween from this year forward. It's a read every year kind of book. Only Ray Bradbury, in the spirit of a traditional holiday tale, can weave the magic of Halloween into a tale with a dark meaningful moral at the end. I was utterly enchanted moving through the ages of time with the boys and Mr. Moundshroud as the the group searched for the elusive, wisp like Pipkin. Tears sprang to my eyes as Tom briefly questions Mr. Moundshroud at the end about Death. The friendship and camaraderie of the boys is heartwarming. All in all, this book checks every single box of an amazing read. *On Audiobook, it's superb. The narrator is absolute perfection and I was entranced the entire time.

  • Ron
    2019-05-12 10:06

    It was good, just not the Bradbury I’m accustomed to. Made me think about the origins of Halloween, which is the whole point. Best part by far came near the end – where meaningful Bradbury surfaced.

  • ❄️✨ Kat ✨❄️
    2019-05-08 10:53

    3.5"O Mr. Moundshroud, will we EVER stop being afraid of nights and death?""When you reach the stars, boy, yes, and live there forever, all the fears will go, and Death himself will die."On Halloween night, 8 boys go to their friend Pipkin's house so they can go trick-or-treating, when he comes out, not quite himself, and tells them to go to the house of Haunts, at the end of the ravine. Skeptically, they head there, and knock on the Marley-esque knocker, where they meet Mr. Moundshroud, who uses his Halloween tree to take them on a journey of Halloween history through various places and events, including the Samhain rituals, and the Dia de los Muertos activities in Mexico. In each place, Pipkin seems to be incorporated into the history of the culture somehow in some spooky way each time, waiting to be saved. Can they save him?This would be a great book to read aloud to kids 10+ for the Halloween season.

  • Ctgt
    2019-05-13 06:17

    Remember back to your days as a kid...those days of unfettered imagination when nothing seemed impossible? This book took me back there for just a moment.Bradbury spins a modern day(relatively speaking) fairy tale with a focal point of eight friends who gather for Halloween. While an undercurrent of adolescent loss tugs at the edge of your awareness, the author takes us on a trip through the death legends of a variety of world cultures.The eight friends, after meeting with their missing ninth friend, decide to meet inThe Ravine From this deep place sprang mushroom and toadstool and cold stone frog and crawdad and spider. there was a long tunneldown there under the earth in which poisoned waters dripped and the echoes never ceased calling Come Come Come and if you do you'll stay forever, forever, drip, forever, rustle, whisper, and never go, never go,go,go..... at the House the place of Haunts.The house was special and fine and tall and dark. There must have been a thousand windows in its sides, all shimmering with cold stars. It looked as if it had been cut out of black marble instead of built out of timbers, and inside? who could guess how many rooms, halls, breezeways, attics. Superior and inferior attics, some higher than others, some more filled with dust and webs and ancient leaves or gold buried above ground in the sky but lost away so high no ladder in town could take you there. The House seemed aliveThe entire house shook. Its bones ground together. Shades snap-furled up sowindows blinked wide their ghastly eyes.Moonlit reflections trembled in the glass like schools of disturbed silver minnows. Then the front door gave a shake, a twist of its knob, a grimaceof its Marley knocker, and flung itself open. The wind made by the suddenly opening door almost knocked the boys off the porch. They seized one another's elbows, yelling.Then the darkness within the house inhaled. A wind sucked through the gaping door.It pulled at the boys, dragging them across the porch. They had to lean backso as not to be snatched into the deep dark hall. They struggled, shouted, clutched the porch rails. But then the wind ceased.Darkness moved within darkness.Inside the house, a long way off, someone was walking toward the door.Whoever it was must have been dressed all in black for they couldsee nothing but a pale white face drifting in the air.An evil smile came and hung in the doorway before them.Behind the smile, the tall man hid in shadows. They could see his eyes now,small pinpoints of green fire in little charred pits of sockets, looking out at them......Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud who will lead them on a journey none of the boys will ever forget.

  • Jon
    2019-04-24 14:10

    In one of his earlier novels, Something Wicked This Way Comes, Bradbury warned to “Beware the autumn people”. Despite issuing this caution, I’m convinced that Bradbury saw himself as an ‘autumn person’, given his fascination with the season and all that it symbolises: the lush growth of summer dying away; the Earth’s final death-rattle before the long, cold, still of winter; the ever-encroaching darkness.I, too, am one of the autumn people. I’m not about to bore you with the details here, but there’s something so utterly intoxicating about this time of year - there are just so many wondrous sights, sounds and smells that simply don’t exist at any other time, which set both my senses and my mind ablaze with yearning. The world feels so different. Transformed. Magical.And of course, the linchpin of the whole season happens to be the very best holiday of the year: Halloween.In The Halloween Tree, eight boys set out for an evening of trick-or-treating and spooky festivities, but are quickly drawn into an unexpected undertaking that sees them trying to save the ninth member of their party from the icy clutches of Mr. Death. With the aid of the mysterious Clavicle Carapace Moundshroud, they embark on an adventure that takes them back in time, where they discover the death rituals and celebrations of past civilisations, from ancient Egypt to Celtic Britain, the witches of the European Dark Ages and El Dia de los Muertos in Mexico. The boys learn that there’s so much more to the myths, folklore and traditions of their beloved holiday than costumes and candy, and that the autumn rituals to honour the dead span right back to the very beginnings of humankind itself.In a world where Halloween has become synonymous with knocking doors and begging for sweets (or, for those kids ten years-old and over, the hope of a bit of money for cheap cider and cigarettes) and is, ostensibly, viewed by those adults who consider themselves ‘normal’ (also see ‘boring’) as nothing more than a children’s holiday, this tale is a reminder of what fears and forces compelled our ancestors to uphold these rituals in the first place. It warms the broken fragments of my cold, dead heart.But then, as an autumn person, it would, wouldn’t it?This book would be absolutely perfect to read to youngsters in the week leading up to Halloween. By the flickering light of the jack-o’-lantern, of course.

  • Amber
    2019-05-23 05:59

    It is Halloween Night. Tom Skelton and friends are about to go trick or treating together, but someone is missing. Where's their friend Pipkin? Searching for answers, they head to the house of the mysterious and sly Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud who takes them on magical tour of Halloweens past to find Pipkin and learn about Halloween itself. Will they succeed on their journey? Read on and find out for yourself.This was a pretty good read. I have only seen the animated film version of this book so this was my first time reading the original book. The illustrations were great and this was such a great and whimsical story. If you like Halloween stories, definitely check this out. This is available at your local library and wherever books are sold.

  • Edward Lorn
    2019-05-18 11:15

    The Halloween Tree, by Ray Bradbury, is to Halloween what Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol is to Christmas. If the novella is not required reading, it should be. This short book proves that Halloween is so much more than a holiday created by candy bar companies, and is most certainly not a satanic celebration. From the tombs of Egypt to the underworld of Mexico during Dia de Los Muertos, Bradbury whisks us away on an autumnal wind. The journey is poignant and purposeful. What exactly would you give to save a friend?The writing is as perfected as prose comes, not to mention, borderline poetic. We lost Mr. Bradbury this past year. But, because of stories like this, he will live forever.Favorite quote: "No wonder the town was empty. The graveyard was full."

  • Dawn
    2019-05-13 11:47

    Audiobook read by actor Bronson Pinchot.What a fun little Halloween classic from 1972. It's a tale about eight friends who, on Halloween, learn a bit about history, death and all hallow's eve on a time travel trip in this fun and scary tale. The audiobook narration was fabulous by Bronson Pinchot and I highly recommend it. I see the illustrations for newer editions of the regular book are wonderful as well. Since it's a pretty short read, it would be fun to listen to the audio while following along to the pictures and story. Next Halloween, perhaps. 4 stars.

  • Celeste
    2019-04-26 11:56

    Full review now posted!This was such a perfect little book to help foster the Halloween spirit.Ray Bradbury is a master of atmosphere. One of the most atmospheric Halloween books I’ve ever read is Something Wicked This Way Comes, and this tiny book spins just a compelling a spell. Bradbury just had an amazing grasp on what makes Halloween special. It’s a little dated, but in my opinion that just upped the nostalgia factor.A group of boys is taken on a journey through time and space to understand the inspirations behind their favorite holiday. The history of Halloween has never been more fun than it is here, as presented by Mr. Moundshroud. Centuries are jumped through, continents are explored, and the ways different peoples honor their dead are revealed to these boy who’ve never seen any significance in Halloween beyond the fun of the costumes and trick-or-treating. As each boy learns the significance of their chosen costume, the essence of Halloween becomes more clear to them. However, learning about Halloween isn’t the only purpose behind the boys’ unusual adventure. Their leader, Pipkin, has been kidnapped and taken through history, leading the boys on a wild Pipkin chase. But even as they search for their friend, the other boys begin to grasp that something is very wrong with Pipkin in the real world, and that this supernatural journey with Mr. Moundshroud might be their only hope of saving him.There were things about The Halloween Tree that reminded me of other books I’ve loved, like The Graveyard book and A Monster Calls. It was sweet and funny and sad, and it basked in a children’s love of the spooky and being scared just a little. This would be such a fun book to read to an upper elementary or middle school class during the month of October, or even just to your own child to get them in the Halloween spirit while maybe teaching them just a little bit at the same time. It was just exactly right, spooky and fun and educational without feeling like a lesson.For more of my reviews, as well as my own fiction and thoughts on life, check out my blog, Celestial Musings.

  • John
    2019-04-25 12:06

    Magical and prosaic. They don't write like this anymore... too bad.