David LaRochelle

author & illustrator

See the Ghost: Three Stories about Things You Cannot See

See the Ghost

by David LaRochelle
illus­trat­ed by Mike Wohnout­ka
Can­dlewick Press, July 2023
Ages: Preschool to Grade 3
ISBN 978–1536219821

The Geisel Award-win­ning cre­ators of See the Cat and See the Dog are back! This time, Max the dog and Baby Cakes the cat are grap­pling with some curi­ous things they can’t see.

See the wind blow the leaves.
See the wind blow the leaves off the page.
See the wind blow the dog off the page.

In a new trio of sto­ries, Max and Baby Cakes encounter a scare-hap­py ghost who has a run-in with a mir­ror, the wind at its blus­tery best, and a tee­ny-tiny fairy with a way­ward wand who may have met her match. Begin­ning read­ers will laugh out loud when they “see” these invis­i­ble things that go “Boo!,”“Whoosh!,”and “Hey! … Will you let me back into the book?”


See­ing is believ­ing! Take a look at these free cre­ative writ­ing and draw­ing exten­sion sheets!

Read a con­ver­sa­tion between David and Mike as they dis­cuss the cre­ation of this book, and view a unique piece of art­work from Mike.

Awards and Recognition

  • Kirkus’ Best Books of the Year, 2023
  • School Library Jour­nal’s Best Tran­si­tion­al Books, 2023
  • Chica­go Pub­lic Library’s Best of the Best Chil­dren’s Books, 2023
  • Bank Street Col­lege of Edu­ca­tion’s Best Chil­dren’s Books of 2023
  • Junior Library Guild selection


“Sim­ple sen­tences fol­low a pre­dictable pat­tern for those devel­op­ing their read­ing skills, but the sto­ries’ action always takes a delight­ful­ly unex­pect­ed turn. Through the clever use of speech bub­bles and Wohnoutka’s delight­ful, inven­tive illus­tra­tions, three invis­i­ble things are ani­mat­ed and giv­en tremen­dous per­son­al­i­ty. It is a remark­able feat to pack so many gen­uine laughs into such a sim­ple text for emerg­ing read­ers. In the vein of its pre­de­ces­sor, See the Dog: Three Sto­ries about a Cat (2021), there is delight­ful inter­ac­tion between the char­ac­ters and the read­er and even a meta-com­men­tary between the char­ac­ters and the book itself that assumes a flat­ter­ing intel­li­gence in its child read­er. This Geisel-win­ning series keeps the bar high with this newest install­ment. Not only does it set begin­ning read­ers up for suc­cess with rep­e­ti­tion and con­text clues galore, but it enter­tains to its very core.” (Book­list, starred review)

“Big laughs from this ear­ly read­er. Bro­ken into three sto­ries, LaRochelle’s acces­si­ble text will inspire con­fi­dence and gig­gles in new read­ers. Wohnoutka’s gouache, comics-inspired illus­tra­tions use speech bal­loons to ratch­et up the humor while pro­vid­ing con­text cues to sup­port emerg­ing decod­ing skills and ample white space for rest­ing the eyes. Iron­ic coun­ter­point between art and text is an imme­di­ate source of com­e­dy … See the star? Buy the book.” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review)

“Anoth­er stand­out title from LaRochelle. VERDICT A delight­ful and humor­ous first pur­chase for ear­ly read­er col­lec­tions.” (School Library Jour­nal, starred review)

“Though it is meant to be read by ear­ly ele­men­tary stu­dents, mid­dle-grade stu­dents will enjoy read­ing this book to their younger sib­lings and class­mates, thanks to the clever trick­ery with­in its pages. For the same rea­son, See the Ghost makes a good, non-baby-ish pic­ture book to share with read­ing-chal­lenged stu­dents in mid­dle-school and beyond … Like Ruth Krauss’s and Crock­ett Johnson’s clas­sic ear­ly read­er, The Car­rot Seed (1945), See the Ghost is one of those ear­ly read­ers that adults won’t mind read­ing with their children/students. And if you’re one of those peo­ple who judge the price of a children’s book by how many times it gets read, you’ll be sat­is­fied. They’ll pick this one up until they can read it all by them­selves, after which you can pass it on to anoth­er begin­ning read­er who is sure to appre­ci­ate it.” New York Jour­nal of Books