February 22, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Pick of the Day: The Monsters’ Monster

Book cover of Frankenstein and little monstersMCDONNELL, Patrick. The Monsters’ Monster. illus. by author. 40p. Little, Brown. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-0-316-04547-6. LC 2011042742.
PreS-1–Three little monsters love to CRASH!, BASH!, and SMASH! Every day they argue over who is the best monster, until they join forces to “make a MONSTER monster. The biggest, baddest monster EVER!” At first, their efforts look successful, but to their horror, the creature’s first words after tearing off his bandages are “Dank you.” The enormous Frankenstein look-alike contents himself with breathing fresh air and gently greeting the spiders, bats, and rats in the castle. But just as the little monsters begin to despair, Monster lets out a ROAR and smashes through the dungeon wall, heading toward the “monster-fearing village” below. Is he finally off to make mayhem? Or will his exploits end in a lesson for the little monsters about gratitude and sharing? McDonnell’s monsters are comic and endearing, and the book’s colors gently shift from dark and gloomy to warm as the story progresses. The message is well executed, and the little beasts’ exuberance at their badness keeps the tale from devolving into platitudes. This delightful title will provide a new option for “not so scary” monster storytimes.–Suzanne Myers Harold, Multnomah County Library System, Portland, OR