cover image Monster Dinosaur

Monster Dinosaur

Lewis Trondheim. NBM/Papercutz (, $9.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-59707-322-6

This carefree tale, which makes palatable such traditional sports as bear baiting, bull fighting, and dog fights, sees two demanding children bought off with the prospect of watching fantastical creatures forced to fight to the death for the delectation of the crowd. Early victories prove terrible foreshadowing as the victor, a once-innocuous little purple monster dinosaur created from the father’s own drawing, is transformed by its experiences in the ring. Can charming tots Jean and Petey, their father, and their own inept monster, Kriss, deal with their creation or are they doomed to be food for a superior predator? Originally published in France, Trondheim’s masterly whimsy and storytelling shine in this gladiator tale. The tension raised by the sudden upset of the natural order as the champion turns on its masters promises dramatic tension; unfortunately, the odds against the rebel are, like those against Spartacus and Nat Turner, very long indeed. Ages 6–up. (July)