A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Kids run off by themselves to explore a castle, and they laugh almost meanly at the adults and at the ghost's pranks.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this story teaches children that one can overcome fear by encountering its not-so-scary source. However, the tale lacks the characterization and plot twists you might expect from the Babar stories.
Is It Any Good?
This is a good-natured and well-meaning book, ideal for parents who are being hounded for a ghost story by children too young to handle emotional suspense. Laurent's pictures are not as detailed or compelling as his father's, but in the end he succeeds in his lifelong effort to keep Babar alive in children's minds.
Laurent de Brunhoff grew up listening to his mother's stories about a small elephant that his father, Jean, turned into Babar, one of the most solid icons of children's literature. Jean began publishing his stories late in life, and it fell to Laurent to keep up the family tradition. This tale, however, lacks the characterization and plot twists you might expect from Jean's stories, and standing alone as a ghost story, even without Babar's family, it lacks the suspense and thrills American children have come to expect from the genre.
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