Working Mummies



Punny, spooky look at moms all wrapped up in their jobs.

What parents need to know

Educational value

A full complement of all the usual Halloween characters, from Frankenstein to Dracula, as well as a representative sampling of the kinds of jobs real moms might have, from doctor and dentist to writer and caterer. Older kids may enjoy the constant wordplay more than tiny ones, and may pick up some new vocablulary words like "conjure," and "daunted" (rhymes with "haunted").

Positive messages

Moms (or mummy mommies) have fun doing do all kinds of work, and they come home to their families at the end of the workday ... and "unwind."

Positive role models

Shows (mummy) moms in positions of authority doing interesting things and being responsible and engaged at work, and loving and happy when they come home to their families.

Violence & scariness

Some creepy images of one-eyed creatures, body parts, pointy fangs, a two-headed monster, brains being placed in Frankenstein-like heads.

Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Working Mummies is a funny, punny look at a various jobs done by working moms -- who happen to be mummies. Creature-filled color spreads show a mummy doctor who gives "coffin syrup" to ghosts "to soothe their frightful groans." A mummy waitress serves skeletons "Scream of Wheat" and wishes customers "Bone appetit!" And so on in clever verse filled with spooky wordplay. The emphasis is on comedy, so the cartoony illustrations shouldn't be too scary for little ones. But there are one-eyed creatures, a platter of eyeballs, drooling fangs, detached monster heads, haunted houses and laboratories, and a mummy librarian's collection of wriggling book worms.

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What's the story?

This fun rundown of female mummy occupations is written in verse and features colorful, spooky spreads showing mummy moms at work: A pet store manicurist files the claws of yowling cats, a beautician curls werewolves' hair, a dentist puts fillings in vampires' fangs, etc. Some work the \"graveyard shift,\" natch. And when they get home from work, they hug their \"boys and ghouls.\"

Is it any good?


Clever verse and fun wordplay make WORKING MUMMIES a great read-aloud. And lively, colorfully gruesome, cartoon-like spreads give kids lots of monsters, werewolves, vampires, spooks, skeletons, bats, goblins, and bubbling potions to look at. More silly than scary, it reassuringly winds up with a mummy coming home to her kids after work, with the daddy mummy busy cooking dinner.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about all the different kids of jobs real moms have. Do you know what your mom does all day?

  • A lot of books and movies that come out around Halloween are are funny and scary. Why is that a good combination?

  • How much to you know about mummies? Have you been to a museum and seen an Egyptian mummy?

Book details

Author:Joan Horton
Illustrator:Drazen Kozjan
Topics:Holidays, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date:July 17, 2012
Number of pages:32
Publisher's recommended age(s):3 - 8
Read aloud:4 - 8
Read alone:5 - 8
Available on:Hardback

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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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