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Friday the 13th

The Funtastic Festivities Booklists compile stories that relate to fun and festive days so that readers of all ages can join the celebration with a good book! 

Today is Friday the 13th, a day full of superstition about bad luck revolving around the number 13. So what’s so scary or unlucky about this number? On the Western side of the world, theories point to gatherings of 13 people. Jesus was the 13th person to join the table for the Last Supper before his crucifixion, and the trickster god Loki (Norse) was killed with a mistletoe arrow by the invincible god Baldur after being the 13th guest at a party.

More recently, we correlate the superstition of the day with the 19th-century novel by T. W. Lawson Friday the Thirteenth, plus a few scary movies where misfortune and mayhan occur on this day. Superstitious or not, Friday the 13th invites everyone to practice caution. So, let’s celebrate all things spooky by enjoying one of these 13 books!

Bad Luck Brad, by Gail Herman; illus. Stephanie Roth (Kane Press) — Fiction, Picture Book, Math, Series, ages 4-6.

The Bad Seed Presents: The Good, the Bad, and the Spooky, by Jory John; illus. Pete Oswald (HarperCollins Children’s Books) — Fiction, Picture Book, Holidays, Humor, ages 4-6.

Beware! It’s Friday the 13th: Dragon Slayer’s Academy 13, by Kate McMullan; illus. Bill Basso (Penguin Random House / Grosset & Dunlap) — Fiction, Prose, Action / Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Series, ages 7-12.

Dead Girls Walking, by Sami Ellis (ABRAMS / Amulet Books) — Fiction, Graphic Novel, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Science, Teen.

Fiona’s Luck, by Teresa Bateman; illus. Kelly Murphy (Charlesbridge) — Fiction, Picture Book, Holidays, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, ages 4-6.

First Day, Worst Day (The Very Worst Ever Series), by Andy Nonamus; illus. Amy Jindra (Simon & Schuster / Little Simon) — Fiction, Prose, Humor, Series, ages 4-6.

Friday the 13th from the Black Lagoon (Black Lagoon Adventures #25), by Mike Thaler; illus. Jared Lee (Scholastic Books) — Fiction, Prose, Humor, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Series, ages 7-12.

How to Tame a Human Tornado, by Paul Tobin (Bloomsbury) — Fiction, Prose, Action / Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Humor, ages 7-12.

Judy Moody and the Bad Luck Charm, by Megan McDonald; illus. Peter H. Reynolds (Candlewick Press) — Fiction, Prose, Humor, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Series, ages 7-12.

A Ruinous Fate, by Kaylie Smith (Disney Publishing Worldwide) — Fiction, Prose, Action / Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Mystery / Thriller, Teen.

The Scariest Book Ever, written and illustrated by Bob Shea (Little, Brown Books for Kids) — Fiction, Picture Book, Holidays, Humor, Animals, ages 4-6.

Sleepover Club on Friday 13th (The Sleepover Club, Book 13), by Louis Catt (HarperCollins Children’s Books) — Fiction, Prose, Holidays, Music / Art, Coming of Age, ages 7-12.

Warren the 13th and the Thirteen-Year Curse, by Tania del Rio; illus. Will Staehle (Quirk Books) — Fiction, Picture Book, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Series, ages 7-12.

Celebrate Friday the 13th by reading a book!

List compiled by CBC’s resident trivia expert, Sommer Wissner. Check out other book lists on our blog.

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