On the outside Bernadette is mostly monsterly. She has point ears, huge eyes, fangs and even a creepy necklace. She can lurch, growl and cause all kind of mayhem. But underneath the fangs and the fur, Bernadette has a deep, dark secret.
Sometimes, when she’s all alone, Bernadette likes to pick flowers, and pet kittens, and do all kinds of things that aren’t monsterly at all.
When Bernadette starts school all of her classmates act like total monsters but with a few secret weapons and some quick thinking Bernadette should be able to win them over and still get to be herself in Mostly Monsterly (August 2010) by Tammi Sauer and Scott Magoon (illustrator).
Sauer’s writing is perfect for reading aloud with built in pauses for suspense and surprises and a lot of humor. Bernadette is a lovable monster who learns that sometimes being different is okay but some concessions might be needed to make friends. The message is never heavy handed or otherwise over the top.
Magoon’s illustrations add the perfect blend of creepiness and cuteness to the story to create a book that will be perfect for any monster fans but not too scary for younger readers.
Excellent possibility for a storytime program about being yourself.
Possible Pairings: A Girl and Her Gator by Sean Bryan and Tom Murphy, Bark, George by Jules Feiffer, Presenting . . . Talulah by Tori Spelling and Vanessa Brantley Newton
*This book was received for review at Simon and Schuster’s Fall 2010 preview in May*