Though mildly playful, there is not much to this creature feature.

READ REVIEW

MONSTERS DANCE

A gaggle of friendly monsters cuts a rug on a moonlit night.

Red, blue, yellow and purple creatures with horns, antennae and bug eyes join in the party, but one small beastie is too shy to participate, which readers learn through its quiet asides. In the end, the little monster is invited by the rest to dance through the night. The layout of the rhyming verse, which mostly scans, tries to be as playful as its protagonists. Unfortunately, it skips across the page in a dark type and ends up being both hard to read in the correct sequence and difficult to make out against the nighttime backgrounds. The goofy-looking monsters themselves are created with a fuzzy brushstroke in garish colors, making each double-page spread of this shindig look overbusy.

Though mildly playful, there is not much to this creature feature. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-58925-627-9

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Oct. 2, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2014

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MY PUMPKIN

A trio of monsters enjoy Halloween festivities in this pumpkin-shaped board-book offering.

A fuzzy blue critter with horns, accompanied by a purple dinosaurlike creature and yellow beastie with pigtails, selects a pumpkin from a patch, carves it and takes it to a jack-o’-lantern contest. The rhyming text, with one line per page, is forced and doesn’t scan: “Pumpkin, pumpkin, big and steady, / Costumes and carving, time to get ready!” While the three central characters are appropriately toddler-friendly, monsters dressing up for Halloween is a bit of a conceptual stretch. The shiny orange foil cover and the bright orange pumpkins within are eye-catching, but the rest of the palette—pale blues, greens, grays and browns—causes some of the characters to fade into the scenery in Marts’ quirky cartoons. This slight slice of pumpkin pie will tempt few little trick-or-treaters. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)

 

Pub Date: June 24, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-545-49332-1

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: July 17, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

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A silly and entertaining interactive read.

FINGERS FOR LUNCH

A monster helps itself to readers’ fingers.

It's lunchtime, and this blue-and-pink monster is looking for something to eat. Readers insert all five digits into holes through the front cover and, one by one as the pages turn, the fingers are gobbled up. The monster narrates its meal with rhyming couplets that evoke silly and gross imagery that will make little readers squirm with delight: “Delectable digits for nibbling and crunching. / Scrumptious wigglers perfect for munching.” The illustrations are perfunctory, with bold lines surrounding the rounded, bouncy characters typical to this sort of media. The interactive play is what makes this book stand apart. Little ones will enjoy putting their own fingers on the monster's plate, but older readers will be able to make this one really sing as a read-aloud toward the end of an intimate storytime. The holes are reasonably sized, but those with large hands may have a difficult time maneuvering.

A silly and entertaining interactive read. (Board book. 1-3) 

Pub Date: April 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-316-37799-7

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: March 16, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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