Books by Michaela Muntean

DO NOT EVER BE A BABYSITTER! by Michaela Muntean
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 7, 2020

"Interactive silliness for both babysitters and babysat. (Picture book. 3-7)"
These piggy progeny are a problem! Read full book review >
STAY by Michaela Muntean
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2012

"Charming; four (or, in this case, 40) paws up, way up. (introduction by Kate DiCamillo, letter to readers from Luciano) (Informational picture book. 4-8)"
What's more fun than bread and circuses? Dogs and circuses—or so young readers will learn from this sweet book about the bond between man and canine and just letting a dog do what a dog's gotta do. Read full book review >
DO NOT OPEN THIS BOOK! by Michaela Muntean
ANIMALS
Released: March 1, 2006

A determined pig scolds readers for interfering with the creative process as he labors to write a story. "You think it's easy to put words together? Hah! Now go away! I need time to think," he grouses from an upside-down yoga position. As readers persist in turning the pages, he gets crosser and crosser, finally writing a story about a giant pest and inviting readers to fill in the blanks with their own names. Lemaitre's illustrations set a cartoony pig in an implied workshop filled with boxes of adverbs, nouns and "salty words," among others. As a picture of the imagination at work, it's a busy one, glue pots and rakes sharing space with bulldozers, as the author needs them. As a conceit, however, it strains somewhat to maintain interest over the course of 32 pages, Muntean's pig's sudden reconciliation to the reader-turned-character a little abrupt and inconsistent with the appealing grouchiness that's gone before. There are other stories about writing and reading stories—Allan Ahlberg's Half a Pig (2004) and James Stevenson's No Laughing, No Smiling, No Giggling (2004) come to mind—that have a little more substance to sustain the fun. (Picture book. 5-9)Read full book review >
WHAT DO DOOZERS DO? by Michaela Muntean
CHILDREN'S

Based on the 1980s Muppet TV show Fraggle Rock, this app reveals the secret lives of Doozers, the little worker bees (who actually look like diminutive green snowmen) who continually build edible structures for the oblivious Fraggles. What the Doozers do is work, constantly. With their helmets, tool belts and work books (but, curiously, no clothing), they engage in large-scale, underground public-works projects. The structures they build, made from radish dust that's been turned into sticks ("Make it tasty; make it quick!"), are eaten by the Fraggles, making room for more construction. It sounds like a perfect coexistence, but an undercurrent of class resentment seems to surface in the text and imagery. As illustrated, the shaggy Fraggles are happy-go-lucky, music-playing hippies. The text sniffs, "But Fraggles never build or scheme. They'd rather join the swimming team." The lesson is that good work is its own reward and the Doozers do it happily, but readers may be left wondering if those little green drones need to form a union. Narration in the app is solid and well-paced, if a little in lockstep with the verse. There are options for highlighting read-along text and flipping pages automatically. Like the Doozer lifestyle it portrays, the app does its work efficiently. (iPad storybook app. 2-7)Read full book review >