It is the time of year when spiders crawl all over my bookshelves. Black spiders, purple ones, pink ones, some with googly eyes, and some with “on” switches that make them glow.
“On Halloween, I will dress up like a vampire to hand out candy,” Jessica says, adjusting a madly glittering spider so that it’s looking right at me. “And you will give me my present.”
“I will?” I say, moving out of the spider’s line of sight.
“Yes. You know, my Halloween present.”
“I give you a Halloween present?”
“Yes. Every year, on Halloween.”
“Really? I don’t remember this.”
“I’m sure of it,” she says.
“What do I get you?”
“This year I think a black cat. Plush. Not a real black cat. You are allergic to cats. And some stickers. And we will eat the leftover candy.”
“Okay. I do this every year?”
“If you don’t,” she says, “you should.”
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Catch a Falling Star (by Jessica Starre) and The Matchmaker Meets Her Match (by Jenny Jacobs), two of my favorite novels.