From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 2–Witch twins Delia and Ophelia devise a spiteful plot to ruin Halloween for the neighborhood children. Using stinky socks that they've stolen out of their neighbors' laundry baskets, they create a spell to prevent the youngsters from saying trick-or-treat. What they say instead is smell my feet, meaning no candy for the hapless revelers. The witches are thrilled with the results until a pretty pink baby booty accidentally goes into the evil brew. This reverses the spell, and Delia and Ophelia are turned into cute babies who are adopted by the kindly old lady next door. The trick is on the witches as the neighborhood kids visit every day in the hopes of making the twins smile. The story is clever, but it does not match Jack Gantos's classic Rotten Ralph books (Farrar) for delicious wickedness. The text is uneven, never quite succeeding at being yucky or warm-and-fuzzy. Unnecessary details muddy the pace. Desimini's illustrations, done in collage and incorporating bold–almost garish–colors, are more effective than the story. They're humorous and eye-catching, although slightly reminiscent of the TV show South Park
. A suitable filler for a holiday collection.–Kara Schaff Dean, Needham Public Library, MA
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PreS-Gr. 2. Witch twins Delia and Ophelia love terrorizing their neighborhood. On walks, they aim their fire-powered umbrellas at passing children, and on stormy nights they snap off the electricity in surrounding houses. On Halloween, they make a potion of stolen dirty socks, and as their cauldron's smoke billows into the neighborhood, they laugh at the effects: trick-or-treaters are suddenly unable to utter any phrase except "Smell my feet." Then a clean, pink baby sock falls into the witches' brew, and everything is transformed: the trick-or-treaters become sweet natured again, and the witches get their due. This has a strong start, but once the potion goes awry, things become more convoluted, dulling the satisfaction that the witches' comeuppance should bring. Still, Desimini's lively cut-paper collages provide plenty of humor, and the giggly, spooky-time details in both words and pictures (mounds of stinky socks, bone picket fences) will satisfy the audience. Not a necessary purchase, but a suitable choice for collections needing fresh material for Halloween read-alouds. Gillian EngbergCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved