A new slant on three familiar tales, featuring a cast of benevolent monsters. In ""Peas,"" Thugmond, a round, green monster prince, would like to marry his monster friend, Griselda, but his parents disapprove because she's not royalty. After the ""real"" princess makes such a rude fuss about a tiny pea buffed under her stack of mattresses, though, Thugmond's parents see Griselda in a new light. In ""Bean,"" Jack steals the proverbial goose that lays the golden eggs and clambers down the beanstalk ahead of the monster, a great hairy purple fellow. But when the monster gets injured in his fall Jack's mother takes pity on him and chastises Jack for stealing. In the end the three live happily ever after, together. ""Monster Stew"" is a takeoff on Hansel and Gretel, starring two fuzzy young monsters who eat everything in sight. The dialogue in ""Peas"" is funny and well-timed; character development makes ""Beans"" the most effective story overall; ""Monster Stew,"" while funny, is a one-joke story that goes on too long. The humor is amplified by details of Modarressi's fully saturated watercolors; in one of the finest scenes in the book, the giant makes furrows for Jack by dragging his large fingers through the soil.