On a Halloween night, eight boys are led on an incredible journey into the past by the mysterious “spirit” Moundshroud. Riding a dark autumn wind from ancient Egypt to the land of the Celtic druids, from Mexico to a cathedral in Paris, they will witness the haunting beginnings of the holiday called Halloween.
Ray Bradbury’s evocative prose and imagery will send shivers of delight—and spine-chilling terror—through listeners young and old, long after the last candle has died in your jack-o’-lantern.
©1972 2000 by Ray Bradbury (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“There is a great treat in Bradbury’s frenetic imagery.” (New York Times)
I'm a big fan of SF/F/Horror, and all things in between and out.
If you’re looking for a fun story to listen to this Halloween, look no further. Bradbury’s The Halloween Tree is about as essential to October as Linus and the Great Pumpkin. After listening to it, I’m kind of surprised there isn’t a stop motion film from Henry Selick in the works yet.
One fateful Halloween night, a group of boys are taken on a journey by a mysterious prankster named Moundshroud in order to save their friend Pipkin’s life. They travel across the world and through history, exploring the origins and influences of Halloween from ancient Egypt to Celtic Druids, to the Day of the Dead. It’s both breezy and spooky, like you’re taking a train ride through Halloween country, and Bradbury is the conductor and tour guide, and it’s near impossible not to be infected with his joy for the holiday.
Pinchot’s narration is an excellent match for Bradbury’s lush prose, sometimes all boyish excitement, and other times completely haunting. There are times when he whispers, and if you’re in a noisy environment, it would be inaudible. But if you’re in a quiet, and hopefully dark place, listening by the light of Jack O’ Lanterns, it’ll send shivers up your spine.
This is one of Bradbury’s October masterpieces, not quite as terrifying or as well-plotted as Something Wicked This Way Comes, but still an incomparable listening experience. If you’re looking for a short book with as much emphasis on fun as on spooky, The Halloween Tree is about as perfect of a Halloween listen you could hope for.
Oh so much Darker and vastly richer than Tim Burton's "Nightmare Before Christmas", Bradbury shows he is the true KING OF HALLOWEEN in this tour of the weirdest holiday of the world. And, as the most frightening tour guide takes you on a ghost train ride through the million nights of man kind's yearning to understand what goes bump in the night, and why we fear and celebrate it all in one pumpkin flaming eve.
Bradbury is at the top of his game, and every sentence, every word is a juicy Halloween treat to be savored. One of his very best. Nearly a poem, his love for this tale roars out in every word. This is the book Bradbury was supposed to write, and only Bradbury could write. A national treasure. If you have any love of Halloween, you MUST read or listen to this masterpiece.
A good read. I could wish for Vincent Price, but listen to Bronson through head phones -- he gives a lovely, dark and sometimes whispering, sometimes dangerous growls - a haunting read.
OH YES. You are caught and locked into this dark night, and scene after scene of ancient Halloween lay out before you, till you are lost in this "follow the Pumpkin Brick Road" to see the Wicked Witch in the Halloween city.
If you like Halloween. You' love this. If you Love Halloween , you will be caught in a dark bliss, you'll re-listen to every year. If you wondered why we celebrate Halloween, you NEED to listen to this story. The Mystery History and the History Mystery of All Hallows Eve! You'll love this weird tale of the strangest and most reverse-holiday of all time. But, yes, it's a intimate read, I suggest head phones. In a dark room. At night. Maybe a jack-o-lantern for company.
I would recommend this book as a nice Halloween read but, it isn't one of Ray Bradbury's best works. The performance was excellent.
I'm a bibliophile since early childhood. Love speculative fiction, odd premises, mystery novels that teach about different places and times.
This might be the most poetic interesting book ever written about Halloween. It goes straight to the core of feelings and tradtions, without ever travellogging or being didactic. The performance, with it's odd volumn issues, does not add to the book.Too much whispering, then full volumn. It's not constructive to the text,
It's still an astonishing read.And still my favorite Halloween story.
I am at that half a century mark in years. I enjoy audiobooks,cats,rats and most days my family,not necessarily in that order!lol
I LOVED this book!The story was full of mystery ,suspense and education.
I have not.
I think everyone should read this book.It gives a great overview of the history of Halloween while telling a spellbinding story.
Career-long newspaperman, retired. Film critic. Actor, playwright, director, producer, college teacher (journalism and cinema).
Right up there.
Moundshroud. Because I am him.
frozen at the ravine.
No. But I practically have the book memorized.
I re-read "The Halloween Tree" each fall. I used to have some dealings with Ray Bradbury, when I asked his permission to adapt the book into a radio play. It had already been done, but he arranged for me to get a copy of the script. Sure miss him.
I love this reading of the Halloween tree, I keep it loaded up on my devices. I work in the Halloween industry and I'll havebit playing in the background as I sculpt.
excellent reading one man performance expressive. great story to work with of course. delight to find the sorry and this reading. certainly one I will listen to again
I need to be able to hear the story, even when the narrator whispers. If I have to turn the volume all the way up just to be able to almost hear the whispering, that's a very bad performance and production. You can imagine what happens: after the whispering, the normal narration blasts your ears away like a horrible commercial. I also didn't like the characterization of Mr. Moundshroud. He sounded bored. I've never considered Mr. Moundshroud to be bored by the
It was a complete disappointment. I hoped to have fun with my son listeining to a Halloween story we both enjoy. This was not to be. Perhaps the dramatized version available on Audible is better. The old cartoon from the early '90's definitely is.
Bradbury's story line and history into this holiday. Also Bronson Pinchot and his narrations are always a pleasure....I always try to check out any book he narrates
Thomas, he links all the characters together some how.
Yes he's brilliant, with voices and accents......and emotions. I love every thing he's ever narrated.
Yes, the issues with death an the young boys, who are looking for their missing friend. It is emotional at times.
I truly enjoyed this story and all the history's of the "Day of the Dead" story and how it starts over 4000 years ago. Humanity has always feared death and created various ceremonies to show our awe and fear. This was a great story and just a spoiler it did have a happy ending..
"an evening walk"
I listened to this while on a late night walk over a couple of nights in early october to get my self in the Halloween mood I recommend you do the same .
but take a torch. .
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