Book-or-Treat! A Bookish Twist For Halloween

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Every month our city has a Curb Day.

Curb Day is when you put to the curb all of the broken or unwanted items from your home. You can only imagine how the “pickers” come out of the wood work.

I happen to be one of them. 🙂


One house in our neighborhood recently had an estate sale the weekend before and everything they didn’t want, they put to the curb for Curb Day. Included in this treasure trove were 4 huge boxes of children’s books. I did the only thing I could think of……. I staged a book rescue.

These were perfectly good books, many of them new. I can only imagine grandma buying books for her grandchildren, never having a chance to read them to her beloved family. I don’t know what the real back story is but…. at this point let’s just go with mine OK? 😉

On the way home I was thinking of what to do with these books. Who or what organization could I give them to? That’s when I saw the huge pumpkin sitting on my neighbors porch, and that got me thinking about Halloween.

Too bad they don’t give out books instead of candy,” I thought to myself.

And that’s when it hit me. We could do both!! We could give out books and candy!

Hence the birth of what is now known as Book-or-Treat.

Book-or-Treat in Three Easy Steps:

  • Book-or-Treat is a time to clean out your bookshelves.
  • Place all the children’s books you don’t want into a box or basket.
  • When Halloween night arrives, let the trick-or-treaters pick out a book and some candy.

Other versions of Book-or-Treat are:

  • Have a costume book swap party. Have everyone come in costume with a bunch of books they’ve read and no longer want. Place them on the dining-room table. Let the kids wander around the table and pick a book and then out through the kitchen to pick up a treat bag.
  • Have a neighborhood version of Book-or-Treat. Please feel free to use our Book or Treat 8.5×10 print. Tape the posters to the outside of the mailboxes. Kids know that they will be able to pick a book and get some treats. Many parents pull wagons behind them to carry all the books.

At the end of the evening, any books we do have left over from our Book or Treat are donated to the Friends of the Library Book Sale.

As Halloween approaches, I hope you’ll join us in some reading fun by giving away read or unwanted books along with some sweet treats.

Here’s wishing you a very happy Book-or-Treat Halloween !!!!

For more details on how you can create your own Book-or-Treat event, grab our free Community Kit that includes how to enjoy “Book-or-Treat” at your house, ideas on spreading the word in your community and even a FREE download of our bright and colorful Book or Treat poster! Sign up below and bring the joy of book-giving to your Halloween festivities!

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4 thoughts on “Book-or-Treat! A Bookish Twist For Halloween

  1. Halloween isn’t so big where I am, but for the odd one or two kids who may stop by I will definitely offer them a book now. Great idea! Neil Gaiman would be proud.

    1. I’m so glad you did this. I bet your visitors were surprised and delighted to take home a new book. We had a lot of fun with this and hope to expand it next year. Thanks so much for sharing this with me . It made my day to know that all the way over in England we were doing the same thing. 🙂 Happy Book or Treat. !!!

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