Monster Mama

Liz Rosenberg, Author, Stephen Gammell, Illustrator
Liz Rosenberg, Author, Stephen Gammell, Illustrator Philomel Books $16.99 (1p) ISBN 978-0-399-21989-4
Reviewed on: 03/01/1993
Release date: 03/01/1993
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-0-698-11429-6
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-606-11633-6
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-613-01750-3
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Patrick Edward's mother is a monster--literally. An impish-faced woman experiencing a decidedly bad hair day and needing a manicure, ``Monster Mama'' lives in a cave behind the family house. In addition to her roaring and spell-casting skills, this unique parent bakes cookies, drives Patrick Edward to school in bad weather and nurses him with ``the sweetest touch in the world'' when he is feeling poorly. But when three bullies ruffle Patrick Edward's feathers with a crack about Mama, the boy gets his chance to prove he's his mother's son--roar and all. Rosenberg creates a light mood with her matter-of-fact description of strange circumstances. Any thrill here is derived from curiosity rather than gruesomeness, and youngsters will find comfort in the oddly tender mother-child relationship that permeates the story. Gammell's trademark electric palette and airy, spattered paint technique make for illustrations that crackle with childlike energy. Except for a couple of portraits, many of the scenes are abstract, with some indiscernible shapes and obscured faces. The effect, however, is not distracting, and gives the text a sense of universality. Ages 4-up. (Mar.)
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