Come bedtime, Ava is dismayed to discover that Mom has left her Piggy in the dryer…in the basement…where the monsters are.
Mom is answering the phone, Daddy is out in the garage, and big brother (the one who told her all about the monsters in the first place) is naturally unhelpful, so Ava pushes up her glasses, screws her courage to the sticking place, and sets off to the rescue. It’s not a quiet expedition, as Ava has several monsters to frighten off before she even gets to the basement door, and once down the dark stairs, she finds Piggy in the clutches of not one but two big, green horrors. Along with oversized screeches and repeated exclamations of “OH NO!” to highlight the all-caps narrative, Felten scratches out a fierce young heroine in heavy-framed specs and heart pajamas, brandishing a homemade wooden sword and recklessly charging a succession of grimacing ghouls to reclaim her beloved plushy. The illustrator is a little cavalier with details—a basement monster licking its lips while holding Piggy “in his yucky hand” has neither lips nor hands in the picture. Also, the pink boots and sparkly crown that Ava pauses to don may be overdoing the girly bit.
Still, a triumphant sally in the long-running war against closet and other domestic monsters, with these mildly scary monsters not slain but thoroughly routed. (Picture book. 6-8)