Youngsters can create a wacky assortment of monsters in this mix-and-match board book.
Each creature is cut into thirds: head, mouth/arms/torso and tummy/legs, all of which can be flipped and swapped for several permutations of fun. The left page includes one- or two-word labels in a large font for each upper, middle or lower section, and on the right is a monster atop a color-coded background that lets readers know which creature they are looking at. The monsters are appealingly crazy-looking even before any inevitable mixing-up takes place. Among Czekaj’s kooky and loose cartoons, there’s a Sendak-like Wild Thing with tentacles, a one-eyed sea monster with wings and paws, and a fanged robot with legs for arms, along with two more mutants for readers to choose from. While the board-book format may strike some big kids as babyish, the cover and the content are goofy enough to attract and hold their interest. The pages turn relatively easily, and this design works better than the typical spiral binding often used for mix-and-match books.
The back cover states that children can create 125 creatures, and aspiring Dr. Frankensteins will enjoy rising to the challenge. (Board book. 3-5)