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What's On Monster Street?

  • Oct 15, 2012
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"I used to be a scaredy cat
afraid to sleep in my own bed.
Late at night, when things went bump,
I'd conjure monsters in my head.

My brothers knew my weakness well.
Every time they got the chance,
They'd think of ways to make me scream,
And laugh when I would wet my pants." - from the book (Hardcover, 29 pages)

Created by the same team that made the award-winning The Monster Who Ate My Peas (author Danny Schnitzlein and illustrator Matt Faulkner), Trick or Treat on Monster Street tells a "turning-the-tables" story about fearful boy forced to go Trick or Treating with his two older brothers.

Stopping to tie his shoe, when he stands up, he realizes he's all alone.

With trees ripping at his costume, he wanders blindly through the dark--until he ends up on Monster Street. He begins to trick or treat, but knows something is amiss when he receives a smelly trout from one house...and some spiders from another.

Coming upon another trick-or-treater, he thought the kid didn't look quite right...confirmed when its green fingers peel off the "human" face!

This book encourages diversity via not judging by appearances, with a good dose of sibling revenge when the older brothers see what he brings back from trick-or-treating on Monster Street.

The verse in Trick or Treat on Monster Street reads clunky compared to Schnitzlein's The Monster Who Ate My Peas. In addition, the illustrations--while much more colorful and varied than in The Monster Who Ate My Peas--lacked that "shiny" realism until the last few pages of the book...making most of the pictures look hurriedly drawn by comparison.

The "monsters who are afraid of humans" is a familiar trope, but when the human kid befriends monsters--and they help him get revenge on his tormenting older brothers--it adds a nice twist...especially as the kid loses a lot of his fears.

Trick or Treat on Monster Treat is an OK book, but there are better Halloween-themed ones out there for kids.

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About the reviewer
Janet Boyer ()
Ranked #198
Author of The Back in Time Tarot BookandTarot in Reverse. Co-creator of theSnowlandDeck. Amazon.com Hall ofFame/ VineReviewer; Freelance Writer/Reviewer; Blogger; Professional Tarot Reader/Teacher; Lover … more
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Kindergarten-Grade 2—A boy who is terrified of monsters has the situation exacerbated by his older siblings: "My brothers knew my weakness well./Every time they got the chance,/They'd think of ways to make me scream,/and laugh when I would wet my pants." When the three go trick-or-treating, the older kids leave the boy behind in the woods when he stops to tie his shoe. He finds himself on Monster Street, meets some monster children, and joins them at a monster party, where the scary costumes are human masks. He wins first prize and the friendship of the monsters, who return with him to terrorize his brothers: "They snatched away my goody bag and plunged their hands inside/But when they saw what I'd brought back/theyscreamed and wet their pants and cried." The message here would not seem to be about conquering fears, as touted on the book jacket, but rather if you are being bullied, get some bigger bullies to take revenge for you. The rhyme flows well for the most part, but at other times is awkward and leaden. Faulkner's watercolors feature a gruesome cast of cartoonish ghouls and are entertaining, but even collections in need of more Halloween fare can consider this title an additional choice.—Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
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