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am 17. September 1999
This book is just what its title suggests, a very good accounting of the history of Halloween in America. It lists the various immigrants who came to America and the folk customs and beliefs they brought that shaped the holiday. A history of each region of the country also shows how Halloween developed independently before a "national holiday " was formed. Well written and intruiging!
My only negative comment of the book would be that some of the pre-American history of the book - that of the ancient Druid's Samhain is inaccurate. No other scholarly writing has ever substantiated that the Celts had a God of the dead known as "Samhain" or that they worshipped a Phoenician deity known as Baal. Belenos is a Celtic God name, but not a relation of Baal! Still, these are small glitches in an otherwise stellar book. I do recommend it to any folk historian or lover of the holiday!
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am 30. Oktober 1998
The book was on display at a local mall and it looked interesting so I bought it. I didn't think of it as a children's book, but my 8 year old bookworm daughter picked it up in the car on the way home and began reading! She was spouting an interesting fact by the minute and was fascinated with the history and lore of Halloween that she was discovering. We haven't gotten to finish the book yet, but are reading some together each night and discussing it and how we do our Halloween! Its a great collection of interesting info; I particularly like it for broadening my child's perspective, beyond our own culture and our own hybrid candy celebration.
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am 12. Juni 2000
As someone who has always loved Halloween, this book is a must have. After seeing, "The Haunted History of Halloween" on the History Channel, I went out and bought this book. It is by far the best book I have found that tells the whole history behind the holiday that we celebrate every October 31. From the ancient festivities of Samhain to the parties thrown by Victorians to parades in the 30's and 40's, this book explores the significance behind this holiday. Why do we trick or treat and dress up? Why are ghosts, witches, black cats, and devils associated with this holiday. This book answers these questions and a lot more.
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am 29. Oktober 1998
Bannatyne is a researcher's dream: brimming with unusual facts about this American holiday, anyone who plans to go to or host a Halloween party (or entertain children between trick-or-treat stops!) will have plenty of interesting tidbits to impress and entertain. History buffs will LOVE the scope: how the colonists celebrated, and the Victorian-age folks, to the present. Don't miss this one, unless you want to be the only person with nothing to say at your Halloween party!
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