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Can the End Times Be Far Away?

Include this in your “Signs of approaching Armageddon” list: Penguin’s Grosset & Dunlap imprint has published "Dick and Jane and Vampires."

The kids’ll love it. Read it with them before bedtime, along with “Go Away Spot,” and “Fun with Dick and Jane.”

Here’s Penguin.com’s product description: “When innocent Dick and Jane meet a creepy, cape-wearing vampire, the unexpected happens: he becomes their friend! Dick and Jane and Vampires borrows from the classic stories and art we all know and love, but adds an of-the-moment twist: a vampire, illustrated in the classic Dick and Jane style.”

Yep. There’s Jane in her pink gingham frock, and Dick in his cute little shorts and blue shirt, and, fangs bared, their latest friend in his purple lined black cape.

Somebody at Penguin has a warped sense of humor. The classic Dick & Jane books are 32-page beginning readers. The Vampire title has 144 pages, so perhaps it’s a bedtime story for young parents more than their kids. Maybe it’s a Monty Pythonesque comment on the state of vampires today.

The publisher has fused classic artwork from earlier books with additional content and text. The style has been maintained, but with a slightly different tone. “No, Sally! Do not go outside. There is something outside.”

If you start your kid's day with Count Chocula, maybe this is for you.