Can Bub persuade his family to change their ways?
A little green, pointy-eared anthropomorphic monster feels lost in the shuffle of his boisterous family—he’s even called Bub rather than his given name, Bob, due to a penmanship problem at school. His parents bicker over what to name The Baby, his older sister, Bernice, is dismissive and something of an attention-hog, and quiet, artistic Bub feels overlooked and downright grumpy after enduring everyone’s behavior day after day. In a twist that is rather difficult to follow he decides “it was time for a change,” and the accompanying illustration shows him walking purposefully from the verso to the recto, through the gutter, leaving a trail of colorful specks (perhaps crayon shavings or colored-pencil specks?). The part of his body that’s on the recto is merely a blue outline, meant to be read as a representation of his new invisibility. Subsequent pages show him rendered in this outline, while his full-color family looks in vain for him. Once he feels they’ve missed him enough, he returns and demands some changes, which it’s implied they end up accommodating. The underdeveloped storyline (particularly with regard to how Bub appears and disappears) undermines the text’s success, but downright charming pencil-and-watercolor illustrations establish Stanton as an artistic talent to watch.
Visually engaging if verbally underwhelming. (Picture book. 3-5)