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by Lori Degman ; illustrated by Dave Szalay

Pub Date: April 15th, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-53411-037-3
Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press

Buckle up and get ready for a rollicking road trip with merry monsters.

This cast of joyful monsters in bright colors with myriad different sizes, shapes, facial features, and appendages is guaranteed to make young readers giggle. In this tour of urban and nature-based tourist attractions, the rhyming west-to-east journey connects U.S. cities, including San Francisco, Hollywood, Nashville, Orlando, and the nation’s capital, with national parks such as the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, the Everglades, and the Cape Cod National Seashore (with one generic amusement park tossed in for good measure). Most destinations merit a double-page spread with scrapbook border and the state name emblazoned across a federal highway marker. Lively illustrations capture a monster’s mischief at every stop. The San Francisco cable car turns one monster slightly green with nausea. Another grinning monster mugs for the camera as the fifth face on Mount Rushmore while a third gets its “15 seconds’ fame” compliments of Wrigley Field’s Kiss Cam. Decked out in sunglasses and floral swim trunks, a daring monster boogie boards over Niagara Fall. But who knew another would get dizzy atop Lady Liberty? In a quiet feminist statement, readers are admonished that “should you meet the president, / assure her he [the monster] won’t bite.” Background illustrations show tourists with a range of skin tones and ages, and the aforementioned president is white.

A giggly geography lesson for trip planners and daydreamers.

(Picture book. 5-8)