A mother’s descriptive complaint sets her misbehaving preschooler to imagining the enjoyment of the crude mischief of a monster’s life.
Transforming himself into a scaly-skinned, green-faced ghoul, this boy begins to growl and grumble, sneer and scowl. He befriends the pet monster under his bed and makes general mayhem. This little guy revels in the grime of the gooey, slimy mud, loudly revving up his monster trucks and staying up all night, unafraid of the dark. But without manners and basic courtesy (please and thank you), he realizes that playing solo is disappointingly unpleasant. “Being a monster isn’t so great. / I’m going home—hope it isn’t too late….” Cozy in bed, sweetness returns him to a brown-haired, smooth-featured, sleepy little human. Moore’s soft-toned, gentle and whimsical cartoon drawings in pencil and watercolors easily complement the smoothly readable, rhyming text. Much like Sendak’s beloved Max, this child needs some time to exercise his outrageous thoughts before coming to terms with his own self-control. The comparison to Max is so obvious the book can’t help but suffer from it, but it makes its own small rumpus.
This young monster’s journey could inspire some self-reflection on those cranky, crabby days. (Picture book. 3-5)