Moonlight: The Halloween Cat

Cozy, scare-free love letter to Halloween night.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Cat sees Halloween as cozy, not creepy.

Violence & scariness

It's Halloween night, but this is as gentle as it gets.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know this is a comforting, not creepy, Halloween book for very young children. There are no ghosts, goblins, or things that go bump in the night. In the eyes of Moonlight the cat, jack o’lanterns wear friendly smiles, scarecrows offer laps to sit in, and trick-or-treaters and nocturnal animals offer plenty for her to watch and enjoy.

What's the story?

Moonlight the cat happily explores her rural neighborhood on her favorite night of the year. She’s a quiet presence, observing and enjoying trick-or-treaters, glowing pumpkins, nighttime animals, and the stars overhead.

Is it any good?


Cynthia Rylant and Melissa Sweet take the mystery cloaking Halloween night and pad it warmly in this atmospheric book, a re-release of the hardcover edition published in 2003. They evoke quiet and stillness as Moonlight wanders through the night, savoring the sights. Rylant’s gentle prose encourages children to see the nighttime world with curiosity rather than fear.

Sweet’s illustrations, done in acrylic and colored pencil, are saturated with deep color. Each page brings a new perspective and just enough detail to enchant preschoolers. There are shadows in this Halloween night, but always there’s the warm, inviting glow from windows and jack o’lanterns.

Vibrant artwork depicts a magical night.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about perspective. This book looks at Halloween through a cat’s eyes. How do you think a dog or an owl might view the holiday?

  • What do you enjoy about nighttime?

  • What do you like about Halloween?

Book details

Author:Cynthia Rylant
Illustrator:Melissa Sweet
Book type:Fiction
Publication date:July 28, 2009
Number of pages:32
Publisher's recommended age(s):2 - 5
Read aloud:2
Read alone:6

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written byAlexaO November 1, 2010
age 2+

being responsible

Responsible parenting includes responsible advising and choosing of what our kids should read, and watch about.This thing is quite vital for us parents, but this is a big worth challenge for us. When they have their own lives to contend with and it comes time for them to have cars, homes, and credit cards of their own, will they know what to do? A kids’ money management tip is that when they have something they want to get that’s a large purchase, such as a new bike, start giving them an allowance based on school performance and chores, and show them how to budget for getting that coveted bike. Are we going to tell them that getting in a tight budget is not easy and that one should carefully study about it. Make sure that you teach your children well about budgeting.
Parent of a 3 year old Written byGios Mommy May 5, 2011
age 2+

Perfect for 2 and over

It a good view of Halloween from a different view.
Teen, 13 years old Written byRodeo-Girl October 24, 2010
age 2+


Wonderful. I read it to my babysitting kids.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models


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