MY BEASTLY BROTHER

Laura Leuck, Author, Scott Nash, Illustrator , illus. by Scott Nash. HarperCollins $15.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-06-029547-9

Squabbling siblings may recognize themselves in the two fur-covered brothers who feud in this flawed tale. The younger monster catalogues the injustices: "My beastly brother's mean and tough./ He always hides his spooky stuff,/ and never lets me feed his rat/ or hang around his vampire bat." Nash (Over the Moon) styles the brothers with claws, fangs and hairy, coconut-like heads, but their issues are universal—and the monster twist makes the lesson easier to swallow. The older brother shows off his superior "casketball" skills and drops "worms and ants... down my underpants," but eventually the narrator softens, remembering his brother's kindness when he has "a scary dream/ and wake[s] up with a frightened scream." (His nightmare is of a smiling human family.) Leuck (One Witch, reviewed above) serves up a steady beat of humorous, monster-inspired verse, although with less originality than in her My Monster Mama Loves Me, and with at times muddied human-monster contrasts (e.g., wouldn't monsters like flies in their underpants?). Occasionally, the illustrations further the confusion: the conservatively dressed monsters—who, amusingly, appear to live in a suburban tract home—don't really look that different from the "nightmare" humans. Alert readers, though, will relish batty details like eyeball-print wallpaper, a skull-patterned sofa and a framed picture of a hacked-down tree. Ages 3-6. (Aug.)

Reviewed on: 08/04/2003
Release date: 08/01/2003
Genre: Children's
Library Binding - 32 pages - 978-0-06-029548-6
Show other formats
FORMATS
Discover what to read next
TIP SHEET
MORE BOOKS YOU'D LIKE
X
X