Even though her puppy siblings sleep through the night, Petra is too afraid of the monster she hears scratching on the roof--and not even 16 stuffed animals can help. Her siblings suggest they bake cookies for the monster, so he won’t eat them. When the four-armed, purple-horned monster shows, Petra’s surprised to find it’s as scared as they are (and even carries 16 stuffed animals, too). In this companion to The Patterson Puppies and the Rainy Day, Patricelli expertly handles a common fear with equally recognizable family dynamics and moments of gentle humor. Ages 2–5. (May)
Petra is afraid of the monster that comes out in the dark. Luckily her very supportive — and very spirited — siblings find a way to turn fear into fun!
Every night, in the middle of the night, Petra wakes up. She’s afraid of the dark. She’s afraid of the noises. But most of all, she afraid of the monster. Her brothers and sister always sleep all night long, and Mama and Papa tell Petra she’ll be just fine. But Petra is still scared, so Andy, Penelope, and Zack decide to help her out. Will a T. rex scare the monster away? A magic wand? Sixteen favorite stuffed animals? What could possibly placate a hungry monster in the middle of the night?
PreS-Gr 2—Petra is afraid of the dark and convinced that a lurking monster will eat her and the rest of her family. While her parents placate her, her siblings devise a plan. They bake cookies, set the table, and leave a friendly note for any monster that might come by. What they discover that night is sufficient to soothe the puppy, and she can sleep. Readers can determine for themselves whether or not a monster was ever really in the house, but the end result is clear—Petra is no longer scared. While the support and assistance of her siblings cannot be undervalued, Petra herself takes the first brave step toward confronting her monster. Although her distress is clearly portrayed through the acrylic illustrations, the book is neither spooky nor scary. White space is replaced by black, with the colorful, pajama-clad puppies investigating darkened rooms and midnight corners against the inky backdrop. While the situation is specific to a fear of the dark, this book is suitable for children who need encouragement in the face of any fear.—Kara Schaff Dean, Walpole Public Library, MA
Petra wakes up every night because she's afraid of the monster under her bed. Her three puppy siblings all sleep through the night with their protection. Andy has a T-Rex toy, Penelope has a magic wand and Zack has a super-strength cape; they are all safe, but even Petra's 16 favorite stuffed animals don't help her. When Petra admits she's afraid the monster will eat them, the puppies, with Mama's help, make cookies (everyone knows monsters love cookies) to divert it. At midnight the monster appears-and the cookies do the trick. This second in the series (The Patterson Puppies and the Rainy Day, 2009) puts a fresh touch on a familiar theme, and the animated acrylic illustrations capture nicely the expressions and reactions of the anthropomorphized puppies. The midnight-blue backdrops stage the tension just right for the white pooches, who are dressed in kids' clothes, while the large font and up-close scenes lend a preschooler-friendly immediacy. More puppies, please. (Picture book. 3-5)