December 10, 2012
Creepy Carrots written by Aaron Reynolds, illustrated by Peter Brown
What’s up! Two creepy books in a row? You better believe it — there is nothing better, IMO, than a book than a safe scary story and this is one of the best.
No one loved carrots more than Jasper Rabbit. The carrots that grew in Crackenhopper Field were the absolute best. He ate them every chance he got and he ate lots!
One day, just as he was getting ready to help himself to a particularly amazing carrot, Jasper heard it. “The soft . . . sinister . . . tunktunktunk of carrots creeping.” Of course, when Jasper turns around, there is nothing there but he hurries home nonetheless.
Jasper sees them reflected in mirrors, peeking out of the shed window, and even sneaking across his bedroom floor in the dark. Of course, when his parents investigate, there are no carrots. Just bath toys, garden tools and toys left on the floor.
But Jasper knew the carrots were there and if his parents weren’t going to help him, he was going to have to help himself.
No more plot. If I tell you the plot it will give away the surprise ending.
Browns illustrations are a perfect fit for this spare but spooky story. Even in the beginning of the book when Jasper is blissfully eating carrots, things feel a little creepy because the art work is moody black and white, like an old movie, with just touches of orange as the only color.
Not sure your little reader is ready for a creepy picture book? This one is atmospheric without being really scary. They are, after all, carrots. The main character is a rabbit, not a child, which creates a bit more distance. And the 1950s feel of the illustrations creates even more distance.
This probably isn’t a good bed time book, but for the young book lover who likes some shadowy atmosphere, this one is a scream.