Sleepy Hollow’s most famous supernatural phenomenon is the ghost of the Headless Horseman, said to be a Hessian soldier who lost his head to a cannon ball during the Revolutionary War. The Horseman is seen most often riding by the church, where local historians say he was buried. He is believed to be always in search of his head. Ichabod is fascinated by this story, being especially interested (and prone to believe) in tales of the supernatural.
Mystery, suspense, legend, romance and humor can all be found in Wolkstein's fine retelling of Washington Irving's classic folktale. Through the gluttonous Ichabod Crane and the devilish prankster Bron Bones, children are transported into a foul nightmare: being chased by a headless horseman who's searching a shadowy forest for his lost head. Wolkstein weaves reality and imagination with simple, eloquent sentences. Alley's graphic watercolors skillfully portray both the humorous Icabod with his pointed nose and long feet, and the gothic underworld of the haunted forest where even the horses become demonic. Ages 6-9.
Eerie and compelling... perfect for Halloween!
If you read my headline, it’s obvious that I should have written this review in October. I digress. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving is a terrific ghost story! WARNING: As another reviewer made perfectly clear, this story is very different from the 1999 movie Sleepy Hollow, directed by Tim Burton. That is actually a great movie that happens to be one of my favorites, but it has so little in common with the book that any readers who first saw, and liked, the movie just might be disappointed with the book—or, at the very least, completely surprised. I read this as a paperback (are YOU surprised) and my only complaint can best summed up with a simple question: Why is this a BOOK??? It’s a short story! Shouldn’t it be part of a collection of ghost stories, or something?? Well, anyhoo, it’s really a fun and spooky book with wondrous characterizations and details! I highly recommend it for Halloween reading! It’s not too late this year because a spooky story can be enjoyed on ANY day of the year. But, if you read it now, you just might have a fun and frightful Halloween traditi🎃n for next year and every year that follows!
A replaceable classic
It’s hard for me to enjoy this short story considering how much of it *feels* like meaningless exposition. Fortunately, it is a relatively short read, though the fancy writing might make a harder read as well.
Irving is very capable of painting a detailed image with his words, but I think the many later horror writers made much better use of the short story format and imagery. It’s a nice read if you’re a diehard fan of the genre or the writer, otherwise I wouldn’t expect it to be the most engaging story.
A classic is a classic for a reason
I read this every year in October. It is well worth anyone’s time . I especially enjoy how people talked differently all this time ago.