The scalawag, the goblin, and even the imp himself were so scared,"" says Johnston of the imp's story about a noise at the window, ""that they shrieked and hid in a big kettle."" After the goblin's story about gathering moon melons they shriek and hide under the rug, and the scalawag's story about a ghost and a magic hat has them jumping into each other's laps. But in fact the stories aren's scary at all, just cloyingly whimsical. The fearful climax to each story is the appearance of a (shiver) BOY! And after all three have been told, a real boy shows up to tell a story about an imp, a goblin, and a scalawag who scare a boy. DePaola's cute little monsters have a shade more style than Johnston's cutesy little stories, which can hardly be read aloud without a lisp.