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A Happy Halloween review: Count Dagmar!

I’m a little bit of a fan of J. otto Seibold’s books and have been since discovering them when travelling with Milo’s dad across across the US a long, long time ago (at least 10 – 12 years). I came home with a lot less room in my backpack and a lot more books. And stationery. Loads of Dr. Seuss and a lot of J. otto Seibold’s picture books and stationery which really caught my eye.

I love the vibrant colours, the intricate, quirky and graphic detail of Seibold’s illustrations. We own some of the Mr Lunch books, Penguin Dreams and Olive the Other Reindeer. Rather oddly I’ve not shared these yet with Milo. I don’t know why (hmm… maybe sticky hands on my gorgeous hardback books that have travelled on a plane with me, moved houses several times and are still in perfect condition. Nah, that couldn’t be it).

But, we now have Count Dagmar which I have shared with Milo as you can see above (his face is shiny because he has buttery marmite spaghetti sauce on it).

And we like it. Count Dagmar is vegetarian just like us and he’s busy getting ready for a party, checking and counting that he’s got everything he needs which we do too before a party. And it’s rhyming, which is always fun.

I’m always interested in reading counting books that rhyme, aren’t you? Just to see what the author comes up with for seven. It’s a tricky one, but J. otto doesn’t disappoint…

“Here come the party spirits, thank heaven!
How many ghosties are there?
Seven. Seven playful ghosties!”

There’s plenty to look at and it’s the perfect Halloween read to introduce Milo to all things spooky. There’s everything in there, spiders, ghosts, bats, castles, skeletons and at the very end, candy, which Milo reliably informs me, means sweets! He enjoys the lift the flap reveal element and counting everything that’s underneath the flaps. He particularly likes Count Dagmar’s nose and seems to be under the impression that Count Dagmar is a girl!

We did a little Halloween baking too. Bats and spiders and witches. To be eaten this evening and given out to any trick or treaters that might come our way.

What are you all up to? Are you celebrating Halloween with a little spooky reading?

(Count Dagmar was sent to me by Chronicle Books which was very nice of them, all thoughts and love of J. otto Seibold are completely mine and Milo’s. Might be time to let him share with me the rest of my Seibold library.)

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2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Glad to hear Milo is a Marmite Spaghetti fan like me! Nigella’s?
    I don’t know this illustrator at all, so always interesting to hear about new ones.
    Halloween is very low key here but might go for a spooky read tonight. Unfortunately I’ve lent one of my favs, “Cake Girl” to a colleague.

    October 31, 2011
    • natashaworswick #

      Yes, well originally Nigella’s, now just adapted to a dollop of marmite and a lump of butter etc… It was the only way to get him to eat spaghetti he was so suspicious of it! I love it too, so quick, easy and satisfying. We’ve had a few trick or treaters and Milo was very curious to see all the skeletons, witches and ghouls running around on our walk back from nursery this evening! He said “it’s a spooky day mummy” – too right! And we read Dagmar again when we got home, then Harry and the Dinosaurs which is not at all scary 🙂

      October 31, 2011

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