The Monsters' MonsterOnce upon a time, there were three little monsters who thought they were the toughest, grouchiest, loudest monsters around. In fact, they spent all their time trying to out-monster each other.
by Patrick McDonnell
NY: Little, Brown Books, 2012
ages 4 - 8
available on Amazon or your local library
enhanced ebook available at the iTunes & Nook stores
One day, these trouble makers decide to build a MONSTER monster of their own: “the biggest, baddest monster EVER!” But they are in for a surprise. It turns out he isn’t exactly the monster that the little guys were expecting. Instead, their big, giant monster is happy. He giggles. He hugs them (with a crushing monster squeeze). And he isn’t grouchy at all. In fact, he’s thankful. The little monsters who created him are indeed perplexed by this, even stunned into speechless quiet.
Little, Brown has also released this as an enhanced ebook on the iTunes Book store and Nook Kids Read and Play store. These enhanced ebooks combine audio narration with the picture book, along with some basic, limited interactions. Kids in my library have loved listening to the pitch-perfect narrator for The Monsters' Monster. They were a little unsure when to tap images and when to just read and listen. But the more limited interactivity kept the focus squarely on enjoying the story. It's definitely one they gave two thumbs up (and plenty of laughs - even from 8 year old boys).
So if you're looking for a Halloween book, or something to bring a smile and a quiet moment to your own monster, definitely give this a try. Take a look at these other delightful reviews and a fascinating interview:
- Tasha at Waking Brain Cells says, "McDonnell’s writing is perfect for reading aloud, setting the right pace and tone to make it a wild rumpus of a read."
- Over on Goodreads, my friend Alyson Beecher writes, "We could all use some reminders of the need for simple gratitude. Done with humor but really sweet."
- Pamela Paul writes in the New York Times, "Alas, as Victor Frankenstein found out long ago, monsters rarely conform to their creators’ intentions. In this case, there’s nothing scary about him. He’s actually quite endearing."
- Jenny Brown's interview with Patrick McDonnell over at the Kirkus Reviews blog. McDonnell tells us that as he started to work on this story and think about the three little monsters, "I began to think: 'What makes a monster a monster?' The answer I came up with was—his thoughts."
Review ©2012 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books