Special indeed are holiday stories with the right mix of high spirits and subtle mystery to please both adults and children. In Ray Bradbury's classic The Halloween Tree, eight boys set out on a Halloween night and are led into the depths of the past by a tall, mysterious character named Moundshroud. Bradbury's lyrical prose whooshes along with the pell-mell rhythms of children running at night, screaming and laughing, and the reader is carried along by its sheer exuberance.
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Ray Bradbury (1920-2012), one of the most popular science fiction writers in the world, wrote more than five hundred short stories, novels, plays, and poems. He won many awards, including the National Book Award and the Grand Master Award from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.From Publishers Weekly:
When young Pipkin becomes ill and is whisked away into the mysterious darkness of the Halloween tree, his friends must race through space and time to save him. With a peculiar old man named Moundshroud to guide them, the kids encounter the many earlier manifestations of the holiday known as Halloween. The voice talent for this production matches well with the predominant characters of young boys, and Jerry Robbins plays Moundshroud with a good eccentric and maniacal tone. While there are sound effects, they are mostly limited to ambient vocals in the background and wind, never utilizing the more calm-fracturing accoutrements like slamming doors or dishes breaking. A wealth of music complements the story and gives the listener a sense of plot progression, although some of the singing feels a bit overdone. (Sept.)
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