Keller (Merry Christmas, Geraldine, 1997, etc.) brings the young leopard, Horace, back to the page, this time as the invitee to a monster-movie party. He's both flattered and terrified, but doesn't want anyone to know of his fear, attempting to dispel it by dressing as a fierce dinosaur, then as an alien (an inspired scene: Horace with a colander on his face, a pair of lightning-bolt-shaped wires spiriting upwards), but mostly by behaving like a little monster to his family. Only when his friend Fred displays even more anxiety can Horace, with a trooper's mettle, come to the rescue and calm his own roiled waters in the process. Quick and declarative, the narrative makes Horace's responses feel natural. He's not original--the rascal who summons the courage to do the right thing--but he is charming.