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Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns is the forty-eighth book in the original Goosebumps book series. It was first published in 1996.

The original cover illustration depicts five Pumpkin Heads and a pumpkin-headed dog walking down a street in Riverdale.

The Classic Goosebumps 2018 reprint's cover illustration depicts a fire-breathing Pumpkin Head bursting through a fence lined with Jack-O'-Lanterns.



Nothing beats Halloween. It's Drew Brockman's favorite holiday. And this year will be awesome. Much better than last year. Or the year Lee and Tabby played that joke. A nasty practical joke on Drew and her best friend, Walker. Yes, this year Drew and Walker have a plan. A plan for revenge. It involves two scary pumpkin heads. But something's gone wrong. Way wrong. Because the pumpkin heads are a little too scary. A little too real. With strange hissing voices. And flames shooting out of their faces...


Drew Brockman absolutely loves Halloween. Unfortunately, her last two Halloween's have been ruined by two kids named Tabitha Weiss and Lee Winston. Two years ago, Drew and her friends Walker, Shane, and Shana, were targets of a mean prank where Tabitha and Lee staged a fake break-in at Lee's Halloween party. The year after, Drew planned a scary Halloween party, only to learn that Tabby and Lee were spending Halloween at Lee's cousin's. What's worse, the fake slime that Shana had intended to use at the party burned a hole through Drew's couch.

Drew and her friends decide to plan the ultimate prank to scare Tabitha and Lee straight. On Halloween, Shane and Shana tell Drew and Walker to invite Tabitha and Lee to go trick-or-treating with them, and the two will meet the other four later on for the prank. When Halloween comes, Drew's mother is reluctant to let Drew go out due to the disappearance of four adults at a nearby town. Luckily, Drew's father argues that Drew can go out as long as she stays with a group.

As Drew, Walker, Tabitha, and Lee head out, they run into two people dressed in costumes with Pumpkin Heads. Tabitha and Lee are convinced that the two are Shane and Shana. The two pumpkin-headed people take the kids to a street that the kids are sure was never there before, saying they will get lots and lots of candy from the incredibly generous inhabitants. But when it starts to get late, Drew and the others learn that the two pumpkin headed kids will not let them go home, and want them to trick-or-treat forever. Tabitha and Lee are still not scared, so they try to take the jack-o'-lanterns off the two, but when they do, they find that there is no head beneath them and that the jack-o’-lanterns are still talking.

As the hours drag on and the children's bags become full, the two Pumpkin Heads force the kids to eat the candy they already have to make room in their bags. The Pumpkin Heads get impatient and order them to eat faster, leading Tabby to accidentally smear chocolate in her hair. The children then complain that they are painfully full, but the Pumpkin Heads continue to demand that they eat every piece that they were given. After they make some room in their bags, the Pumpkin Heads get the children moving again. They lead to a street inhabited with Pumpkin Heads. Soon, Drew, Walker, Tabby and Lee are surrounded by Pumpkin Heads. Four Pumpkin Heads walk towards the group with four craved pumpkins. They tell the children they're shall become Pumpkin Heads when the pumpkins are put over their heads. After they successfully put pumpkins over Tabby and Lee's heads, Tabby and Lee run away, leaving Drew and Walker.

At this point, the two Pumpkin Heads reveal that they are Shane and Shana, and that the entire ordeal was merely the prank that the four had created to scare Tabitha and Lee away. It turns out that Shane and Shana are actually aliens with the strange abilities to disguise themselves as any person and mimicking their voices, and the other Pumpkin Heads in the neighborhood were their brothers and sisters. As they arrive at the driveway of Drew's house, Drew asks Shane and Shana what do they eat for she never saw them eat. The two tell her that their people eat human flesh but that she needn't worry yet, she's not an adult yet, nor is she plump enough. Drew asks them if they're joking, but she doesn't get an answer.

Reprints and rereleases

Book Release date Type Media

2003 - 2007 reprint series

August 2005 Standalone Paperback

Classic Goosebumps

Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns - Classic Goosebumps.jpg
July 31, 2018 Standalone Paperback


  • The Classic Goosebumps reprint features numerous changes:
  • Most references to the missing people being fat are removed.
    • The following line is removed: "My dad says they’re roly-poly. Dad always thinks of something icky to say about everyone!"
  • Lee's description is changed to remove a comparison to an MTV rapper, and it says he has brown skin instead of saying he is African-American.
    • A portable tape player is changed to be a recorder. A film camera becomes a digital camera.
    • Original: "Shane and Shana had dressed as some kind of blobby creatures."
      Altered: "Shane and Shana had dressed as some kind of creatures."
    • Original: "All four people were very overweight. The first one, a bald man in a bulging turtleneck sweater, had at least six chins!"
      Altered: "All four people were huge. The first one, a bald man in a bulging turtleneck sweater, had to be at least six foot six!"
    • The book removes references to the black facepaint in Walker's "dark and stormy night" costume (likely to avoid the similarities to blackface).
    • The book omits a reference to Chuckles candy.
    • Strangely, the reprint accidentally introduces a typo:
      Original: "Overhead, a sliver of moon rested near a cluster of bright stars."
      Altered: "Overhead, a silver of moon rested near a cluster of bright stars."

International releases

No. Book Country Translated title Release date Publisher

Pembalasan di Malam Halloween



The Halloween Night of Judgment August 1997 Gramedia Pustaka Utama

Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns

United Kingdom


Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns January 16, 1998 Scholastic

Le zucche della vendetta



The Pumpkins of Revenge August 1998 Mondadori

Zucche all'attacco



Pumpkins on the attack 2011 Mondadori

La venganza de Halloween



Halloween Revenge 1998 Ediciones B

Balkabaklarinin Saldirisi



Attack of Pumpkins 2000 Aksoy Yayincilik

La nuit des disparitions



The Night of Disappearances August 31, 2001 Bayard Poche

Die Nacht der glühenden Kürbisse



The Night of Glowing Pumpkins September 2002 Omnibus Verlag

Нашествие тыквоголовых



The Invasion of the Pumpkinheads N/A РОСМЭН-ПРЕСС




Halloween Cry October 3, 2015 Shang Zhou Publishing

핼러윈의 침입자

South Korea


Halloween Invader September 30, 2016 Gorilla Box
Classic Goosebumps

Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns

United Kingdom


Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns September 6, 2018 Scholastic

La venganza de Halloween



Halloween Revenge October 15, 2018 Hidra

Classic Goosebumps



Television adaptation

Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns was adapted into an episode of the Goosebumps TV series. It is the tenth episode of season two, and the twenty-ninth episode overall.



The original printings of the book included bookmark trading card tear-outs. Some printings also included metallic stickers. The first sticker is a modified version of the cover. The Pumpkin Heads' designs have been changed to look more sinister, and the dog and owl were removed. The second sticker features the cover artwork from Monster Edition #1.

While it's never been made clear where the finalized alternate cover art came from, the original cover mockups and an early pencil sketch almost matches the sticker art exactly.[1]


Original Reprint Cover With Wrong Apostrophe

  • When it was first unveiled, the Classic Goosebumps cover for this book featured the title Attack of the Jack-'O-Lanterns; the apostrophe was mistakenly placed before the "O" instead of afterwards. Before the reprint was released, the cover was altered to say Attack of the Jack-O'-Lanterns.
    • It's not uncommon for Classic Goosebumps reprints to slightly alter books, but this book in particular required a considerable number of changes. (A detailed list is included in the "Reprints and rereleases" section above.)
  • The ending of this book may have been inspired by "To Serve Man", an episode from Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone episode. R.L. Stine has stated that he views Serling as an inspirational figure.
  • A possible early title for the book appears to have been Night of the Jack-O'-Lanterns according to some pieces of official merchandise and a Fox Kids commercial for the episode.
  • The tagline is a reference to the phrase, "Put one foot in front of the other", which is often associated with the song of the same name sung by Kris Kringle and the Winter Warlock in the 1970 Rankin/Bass Christmas special Santa Claus is Comin' To Town.
  • This book references MTV, Star Trek, Silver Surfer, Batman, Wonder Woman, Kit Kat, M&Ms, Pepsi-Cola, Hershey's Kisses & Milk Chocolate Bars, Tootsie Roll, 3 Musketeers, Milky Way, and Nestlé Crunch.
  • An episode of Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction entitled "Wheezer" featured the character Zack reading an excerpt from this Goosebumps book to his dog.
  • Both the book and episode premiered in October 1996.
  • The mailbox on the original cover by Jacobus reads 48, which could be a reference to the book number. However, this could be a coincidence.

References in other Goosebumps media

  • A Pumpkin Head appears in the film Goosebumps as a background monster and the original cover art appears in the end credits.
  • Various creatures modeled after the Pumpkin Heads appear in Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween, including a Pumpkin-headed tree monster, a fire-breathing Jack-O'-Lantern, Sergeant Squash, and Terry the Pumpkin.
  • The Pumpkin Heads appear in Goosebumps HorrorTown, and there is a quest based on this book that focuses on a Pumpkin Head named Jack.