Trick or Treat on Monster Street

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Brendan Frost
Picture books told from the perspective of monsters seem in vogue this year, but one can see why—they are entertaining and effective. This one by Danny Schnitzlein begins from the bedroom of a young boy who is always scared by his older brothers and you know by the end he will be getting back at them. But the method by which Schnitzlein gets to that point is intriguing, with our protagonist getting lost in a Twilight-Zone style reverse world where the monsters dress up like humans for Halloween. They mistake our protagonist for a monster in costume and eventually he wins the best costume contest—and even meets a girl monster who develops a crush on him. The rhyming works continually throughout the book, and though the message of tolerance and empathy is overtly stated at one point, this does not seem too heavy handed and is well supported by the story. The illustrations include fun details and are drawn in a sort of wobbly, loose texture that make the world seem more alive and wriggly. Reviewer: Brendan Frost
School Library Journal

K-Gr 2

A boy who is terrified of monsters has the situation exacerbated by his older siblings: "My brothers knew my weakness well./Every time they got the chance,/They'd think of ways to make me scream,/and laugh when I would wet my pants." When the three go trick-or-treating, the older kids leave the boy behind in the woods when he stops to tie his shoe. He finds himself on Monster Street, meets some monster children, and joins them at a monster party, where the scary costumes are human masks. He wins first prize and the friendship of the monsters, who return with him to terrorize his brothers: "They snatched away my goody bag and plunged their hands inside/But when they saw what I'd brought back/they screamed and wet their pants and cried." The message here would not seem to be about conquering fears, as touted on the book jacket, but rather if you are being bullied, get some bigger bullies to take revenge for you. The rhyme flows well for the most part, but at other times is awkward and leaden. Faulkner's watercolors feature a gruesome cast of cartoonish ghouls and are entertaining, but even collections in need of more Halloween fare can consider this title an additional choice.-Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781561454655
  • Publisher: Peachtree Publishers, Ltd.
  • Publication date: 9/1/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.50 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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