#PictureBook Review: The Little Shop of Monsters by R.L. Stine

#PictureBook Review: The Little Shop of Monsters by R.L. Stine

The Little Shop of MonstersThe Little Shop of Monsters by R.L. Stine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

picture book

Summary
If you are brave enough, head to the Little Shop of Monsters. It is the best place to get your monsters. They have stinky, smelly monsters, sticky and icky monsters, squeezer and teaser monsters, and piggler-giggler monsters! But before you go, you should really know… you don’t choose your monster. A monster chooses YOU!

My Thoughts
R.L. Stine and Marc Brown teaming up is like 20-year-ago Katelyn’s dream team. And it even works well today! As an animated picture book reader, this is a really fun title to share with children. There is a lot of opportunity to interact with your audience and really ham it up… holding your nose when talking about the stinkiest, pukiest, rottenest, yuckiest monsters; tickling the Tina-not-ticklish monster, and wiping the sneek off of the pages after we encounter the friendly Sneezer monster.

My only issue with this book is some of the language. At times, Stine-being-Stine suggests the monsters will jump out and eat you or might have eaten your friend that lives next door. I had to intentionally smooth over those passages by making sure to use a light, silly voice so as not to actually spook anyone. That said, over all Stine (and thankfully Brown’s illustrations) do a great job at making the word “monster” more silly than scary!

Bottom Line
Those that enjoy the classic Monster At The End of This Book, will really love Little Shop of Monsters! This would be a great title to share in storytime for a monster theme or around Halloween. Such a lot of fun!

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Some Halloween #PictureBook Reviews!

Some Halloween #PictureBook Reviews!

I always love getting my kids ready for holidays or occasions with quality picture books. Here are some Halloween picture book reviews from titles we have recently read.

I Am a Witch's CatI Am a Witch’s Cat by Harriet Muncaster
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

publisher: Harper Collins

picture book

A little black cat tells all about how she knows her mommy is a witch: she keeps potions in the bathroom, she buys jars of green fingers at the grocery store (pickles!), she grows magical herbs in their garden, she cackles in a circle with her friends, and she can magic it all better when her little cat gets hurt.

Muncaster’s illustrations are what really get me. She uses all kinds of materials, paper, fabric, foil, to create 3D illustrations which were photographed. I really love how light shines through the stained-glass on their front door.


Happy Halloween, Witch's Cat!Happy Halloween, Witch’s Cat! by Harriet Muncaster
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I Am a Witch’s Cat by Harriet Muncaster
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

publisher: Harper Collins

picture book

A cute follow up to Muncaster’s I Am A Witch’s Cat, we see our little black cat excitedly getting ready for Halloween by trying to decide what costume to wear. A green frog? No… too slimy. A pink ballerina? No… too frilly. An orange pumpkin? No… too smiley. In the end, she decides to be a witch and her mommy is now the black cat.

Clearly the opportunity was not passed up to create a Halloween book, this one doesn’t shine quite as much as the original. However, again, I love all the media used to create the bright, friendly 3D illustrations. This is another not-spooky book to share when getting ready for Halloween.

Not scary in any way, these are fun for getting ready for Halloween.


Haunted PartyHaunted Party by Iza Trapani
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

publisher: Charlesbridge

picturebook, halloween

We watch as 1 ghost gets ready to host a spooky Halloween party. The guests begin to arrive, skeletons, goblins, werewolves, vampires, ghouls, monsters, witches, and mummies, and dance the night away until 10 children come trick or treating. All of the spooky guests run and hide and the ghost spooks away the trick-or-treaters.

Essentially a counting book, it could be a very cute story about how the typical spooks of Halloween are scared away by the sweet children at the door. I don’t really care for the ghost frightening the kids away. The last page spread shows the ghost reading a book on the front porch that is covered with the candy bags of the children who have run off.

My 3 year old asked why and I had to agree with her. Why do that? I quickly turned back to the cover of the book showing the smiling, friendly-looking ghost and talked about what a fun Halloween party they had.


I Spy Spooky Night: A Book of Picture RiddlesI Spy Spooky Night: A Book of Picture Riddles by Jean Marzollo
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

picture book

I really love this entire series of books. My 3-year-old is on the cusp of reading and loves poring over books for long periods of time. She enjoys finding all of the items and even just exploring each page spread to see what there is to be found. My almost 2-year-old also got into the fun by pointing and naming what he saw. This series is great for multiple levels of comprehension.

The illustrations are beautiful photographs of carefully made miniature scenes. The accompanying text is a simple, rhyming list of items to be found in the picture. There are usually varying levels of complexity and some of the text can be more of a riddle which adds more fun.

This whole series is great for interactive exploring with little readers. This one in particular is fun for getting into the Halloween mood without being scary.

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