How to Scare a Ghost (How to)

by Jean Reagan (Author) Lee Wildish (Illustrator)

Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
Series: How to
From the creators of the New York Times bestsellers How to Catch Santa and How to Babysit a Grandpa comes a silly (and not-too-spooky) send-up of Halloween...and ghosts! Who says ghosts get to have all the fun on Halloween? In this humorous new addition to Jean Reagan and Lee Wildish's bestselling How to... books, the kids are in charge! But in order to scare a ghost, you might have to find one first. Guided by a tongue-in-cheek instructional style, two children show young readers how to set the stage for a spooktacular Halloween by carving pumpkins, playing games, and even reading scary stories. Has a ghost showed up? Great! Now the fun--er, the scaring--can really begin. Filled with charming role-reversal humor, creative ideas, and lots of holiday spirit, How to Scare a Ghost is sure to delight kids, parents, and things that go bump in the night.
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Kirkus Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Reagan and Wildish (How to Babysit a Grandma) return with another how-to book, this time with a ghostly theme. With Halloween on the way, two brunette siblings set out to attract and "scare a ghost" by following a series of steps. Ghosts, Reagan explains, are drawn toward certain Halloween-y items and activities, such as "creepy pumpkins," bobbing for apples, and scary noises. Items and tasks are clearly identified and labeled in Wildish's light cartoons like steps in an instruction manual. When a ghost finally arrives, the children must determine if it's real (does it walk or float?) and then begin their scaring. But the only thing that really scares their sweet-natured ghost is the vacuum cleaner. When it proves too frightening, the two take the ghost (dressed as a robot) trick-or-treating. This is a playful Halloween story for readers not ready for scarier fare. Ages 4-8. (Aug.)

Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Jean Reagan
JEAN REAGAN was born in Alabama but spent most of her childhood in Japan. She now lives in Salt Lake City with her husband. In the summers, they serve as backcountry volunteers in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. To learn more about Jean and her work, please visit

LEE WILDISH has illustrated a number of children's books, including Twosomes by Marilyn Singer on the Knopf list. To learn more about Lee and his work, please visit
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication date
August 21, 2018
How to
BISAC categories
JUV019000 - Juvenile Fiction | Humorous Stories
JUV013000 - Juvenile Fiction | Family | General
JUV017030 - Juvenile Fiction | Holidays & Celebrations | Halloween
Library of Congress categories
Ghost stories

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