Whoa. Be prepared for the intense frustrations, the moody outbursts and the green scowls of Crankenstein.
Berger, who must be writing from direct experience with such a fellow, wryly informs readers what to expect. When offered a huge stack of pancakes with only the last small drop of syrup, Crankenstein’s reply is an angry “MEHHRRRR!!” A similar response comes when it is “time for school” or “when it’s WAY too hot for Popsicles” or “when…it’s bedtime.” Santat brilliantly utilizes Adobe Photoshop to zoom in on every extreme facial expression and clenched fist that conveys the barely contained anger and leads to the eventual unleashing of Crankenstein’s fury. Each setting reveals sly comic elements that both kids and their grown-ups will appreciate. Readers will laugh out loud at the monster’s seemingly over-the-top reactions and relate to the many tantrum-provoking situations. Being forced to swallow gross cough syrup? Waiting forever in line for anything? In the end, only a fellow Crankenstein can jolt him back to normalcy. Perhaps such extreme behavior is truly funny when spotted in another.
Get ready to read this aloud a lot. (Picture book. 3-7)