LAURA NUMEROFF'S 10-STEP GUIDE TO LIVING WITH YOUR MONSTER
Laura Joffe Numeroff, , illus. by Nate Evans. . HarperCollins/Geringer, $15.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-06-623823-4
Numeroff and Evans provide a carefully and comically outlandish outline to the parameters of monster (aka pet) ownership. To illustrate their advice, they focus on one relationship between a boy and a monster, from the first step—the purchase itself at a kind of monster animal shelter ("Do not pick one who grabs you and starts to eat your shirt")—to the 10th step, managing tuck-in time ("Counting sheep will make him hungry"). Evans emphasizes the monster's girth with full-bleed pictures of him nearly spilling off the page. Festooned with a host of goofily grotesque features—polka-dotted belly, striped tail and nose horn, blue hair—the monster, with his bright, happy eyes and avid grin, brings to mind an oversize, eager-to-please dog (children will also gleefully note the monster's fondness for red sneakers and a beanie cap). Numeroff's poker-face prose makes the perfect foil for these visual hijinks. In Step 5, she soberly advises, "Do not play fetch with your monster. Save this for your dog or little brother," while Evans shows the monster running after a ball, then returning to his owner with not only the ball, but the entire tree in which it landed. Ages 3-7.
Reviewed on: 02/25/2002
Hardcover - 32 pages - 978-0-06-623822-7