cover image Frankenstein’s Fright Before Christmas

Frankenstein’s Fright Before Christmas

Rick Walton, illus. by Nathan Hale. Feiwel and Friends, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-312-55367-8

Walton and Hale, again collaborating under the pen name Ludworst Bemonster, return with a Christmas companion to their 2012 Frankenstein-meets-Madeline mashup, Frankenstein: A Monstrous Parody. Lumpy-headed little Frankenstein can’t wait for Santa’s arrival at Miss Devel’s decrepit castle; he even drags a Christmas tree—ornamented with bats, snakes, and bones—in from the graveyard. When Santa Claus lands on the roof, it gives way, and he crashes unceremoniously onto the floor. But no matter, he’s got gifts: new heads for the tiny monsters, who have been making do with toasters, cacti, fishbowls, and other off-kilter substitutes after literally losing their heads in the opening scene. Despite a muddled sequence of events once the presents are delivered, the book’s wicked sense of humor will have mischievous readers cackling—Hale even manages to use the red-and-green Christmas palette to cadaverous effect. Ages 4–8. (Oct.)