Jeff C. Carter’s Cold Spell steps into a New England Halloween with a group of friends who pour themselves into the holiday, even when a Nor’Easter dumps a blizzard – and a malicious witch – on their plans. These adaptable young men face dead beings resurrected as Snowlems (Golems made of snow), Frost vampires, a headless horseman made of snow, and more while they battle to keep the witch from opening a gateway between the worlds of the living and that of the dead.

This is a thoughtfully put together book. The book shows friendships and parental relationships in a good light. The scares are fun and the stakes are high, which make for an investing experience. Between chapters, small pen and ink drawings grace the pages. At the end, readers can refer to an appendix of the colorful vocabulary created by the boys, and in classic D&D style, the monsters they faces are given rankings, stats, and the like. I read this with my kids, and they enjoyed it. My eleven-year-old, especially, found the book invigorating and fun.