Even future vampire slayers can be afraid of the dark.
Eight-year-old Buffy is afraid of sounds coming from her closet at night. She invites her friends Willow and Xander to sleep over. They have a great night—but can’t bring themselves to open the door to the noisy closet. They ask school librarian Giles for help, and he tells Buffy that someday she’ll be a great warrior; for now, if she acts bravely, the monsters will be scared. Xander and Willow stay over again, and the trio find a closet full of smiling monsters (that every fan of Buffy’s TV show will recognize, although none of them are likely in this book’s target audience). Buffy attacks, and the monsters are cowed…and join the party—until Mom comes in. Though Buffy couldn’t have been friends with Xander and Willow at 8 according to the extensive mythos of the series/movie/comics (she moved to Sunnydale in high school) and turning some of the horrifically violent monsters into doe-eyed, glorified teddy bears is kinda creepy, Rekulak’s newest nostalgia-inspired picture book has fantastic comic-style, action-filled, colorful art by Smith and a fine (but not preachy) lesson that even rockin’ (female) heroes can be afraid sometimes. Caregiver fans will enjoy sharing their obsession with a new generation, who will enjoy reassurances that the monsters in the closet aren’t a threat. Buffy and Co. all present white, but they have some diverse classmates.
Sure to inspire future slayers to take on the monsters in their closets (thankfully readers’ monsters won’t be real). (Picture book. 4-9)