It’s that spooky time of year again! Stores are setting up Halloween-themed displays, such as Toys “R” Us‘ Trick “R” Treat Boo-tiques in store and online, which are stocked with Halloween must-haves to help parents and their little ones prepare for the spooky season. The seasonal costume stores are popping up again all over the city—and I could not be more excited. With a flair for the dramatic, Halloween is one of my favorite times of year. It’s full of fun disguises and costume, elaborate makeup and wigs, and, of course, candy.

Another great thing about the Halloween season though are themed toys, music, and other products that help kids celebrate the season in more ways than just trick-or-treating.

spotitSpot it! Halloween, from Blue Orange Games, is part of the company’s popular Spot it! line. The game is a card game featuring 55 circular cards packaged in a collectible tin canister that’s easy to travel with. There are dozens of spooky symbols, and each card features 8 of them. There are five different games you can play with Spot it!, but in every variation the goal is the same: be the first to spot matching symbols between two cards. The Jack-o-lanterns, cobwebs, ghouls, zombies, and more put players in the Halloween spirit.

The fast-paced Spot it! Halloween game is perfect to keep kids entertained. For those already familiar with the line, this version makes a nice seasonal addition to the game closet. The spooky symbols are fun and colorful, and the small travel-sized container let kids take the game anywhere with them. Although the Spot it! Halloween special edition is only available seasonally, all of the other Spot it! versions are just as entertaining.

goldenMusic plays a huge role in scary movies—it’s all about the sensory experience. You can add a little spooky music to your Halloween parties—although in a much less intense and much more fun way—with an album full of fun Halloween tunes. Golden Records Spooky Halloween Hits has returned this year with 20 fun original songs, remastered to get kids in the Halloween spirit. The album can jazz up any Halloween party with songs such as “Halloween Dance,” “My Friend the Ghost,” and “Halloween Macabre.” The upbeat songs vary in their composition, so it’s not the same ol’ eerie music playing over and over.

These Halloween songs are a fun way to get you and your kids ready for Halloween before the big day arrives. Add a little ghoulish ambiance to your party or costume shopping trip with a CD that is fun for the whole family.

zombieOkay, so WowWee’s Once Upon a Zombie line isn’t specifically a Halloween toy, but these zombified princesses are perfect for the spookiest of seasons. The world of the classic fairytale princesses is turned upside down by this new property created by Toon Studio of Beverly Hills. The six dolls (Snow White, Cinderella, Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty, Belle, and The Little Mermaid) are fully articulated, highly detailed, and feature rooted hair and glass eyes. Each 11-inch doll comes with a doll stand and a brush.

Girls ages 6 and up, as well as doll collectors, will love these dolls. They take the classic princesses that we’ve come to love and put an interesting spin on them. While there are many different versions of fairytale princesses on the market, the Once Upon a Zombie line’s spooky, but trendy feel is truly unique. With the new zombie craze that’s sweeping pop culture, these dolls are a fun take on a classic that little girls will like to play with, but older girls can be fans of too!

Halloween fun can be much more than going around door-to-door to collect candy dressed as a pirate (although that’s pretty fun!). With fun games and toys, your kids can jump in on the fun even this early and the season—and get excited for the big night. So get out there and get spooky!

For more commentary from Ali, check back often. Views expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Toy Book as a whole. We hope that you will share your comments and feedback below. Until next time!