A contest, Halloween fun, and a Teacher’s guide for A Box of Bones!

With Halloween around the corner–albeit a much different Halloween in very challenging times–I thought I’d share some tasty creepy fun as well as announce that A Box of Bones has a teacher’s guide!

You can download a copy of the guide free here on the MacKids School & Library site. (Read to the end of the post for contest information!)

Now for the tasty part…

Trick or treating might be a bust this year, but you can always try this simple recipe and make your own creepy cookie house!


2 sticks of butter

3/4 cup of muscovado sugar (or dark brown sugar)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup black cocoa powder (bulk stores have this!)

2 cups flour (plus 1/2 cup more in case the dough is too sticky)

Candy, pretzels, oreo cookie crumbs to decorate. (I used a metal baking pan as my base.)

You will also need some black and yellow icing. I used a tubes of store bought, though you can always make your own royal icing if you choose.


Beat butter with sugar. Add vanilla, then egg. Add black cocoa powder and then flour. Once dough becomes too thick to stir, use hands.

There are many cool creepy cookie house templates you can find online. I used a simple gingerbread house template as I wasn’t sure my architecture skills were up to some of the more complex designs…perhaps next year!

You don’t need to chill this dough, but you can if you like. Simply roll it out, cut and you’re on your way! As you can see, my construction was a bit sketchy to begin with…and the yellow icing was, well, a mess, however…

Once I got the roof to stick, added the bats and candy, it turned out okay. Dim light helps…

And if you like this delicious dough as much as I do–it taste like oreo cookies!–make a second batch and try some pumpkins, bats, ghosts, or other halloween creations!

Of course, for more Halloween fun, try watching this creepy cartoon version of one of my absolute favorite Edgar Allan Poe tales: The Tell-tale Heart!

Now for the contest! Teachers! Librarians! Parents! Head to my Instagram (marinacohenbooks) or Twitter (@marinacohen) for a chance to win a FREE COPY of A Box of Bones PLUS a FREE VIRTUAL CLASSROOM VISIT! (US and Canada only…sorry other friends!)

Hurry! Winners will be drawn on October 31st! Until then…

Happy Halloween!