There was a knock at
The front door.
Mr. Mo was gardening,
So Mrs. Mo went to see who it might be …
Mrs. Mo is visited by a monster who knows how to CRUNCH, MUNCH, AND CHEW. Though she suggests other activities, the monster is not interested. A monster knows what a monster knows and that is how to CRUNCH, MUNCH, AND CHEW. Monster spins through Mrs. Mo’s house like a mini cyclone. Mrs Mo doesn’t try to reason with the monster, she just continues about her tasks for the day. She offers to include the monster, but the monster considers all are outside his/her skill set. Until finally monster discovers a task he/she CAN do, and the pair set about completing it together. A calm descends upon the house as they work together, until there is a knock on the door. The monster is blue, with a stocky body and thin arms and legs. Mrs. Mo is an elderly lady. Each spread features bright colours except for several central spreads which feature action in the attic where Monster’s actions intensify and then he reaches a turning point. The are depicted mostly in shadow colours, although Monster is still identifiable.
Monster is … a monster! Unbiddable and unstoppable. But Mrs. Mo shows endless patience, until Monster comes to her, in search of something to do. Monster feels unskilled for the first suggested activities but finally finds an activity to join in with. Young readers will enjoy the wildness and repetition and will giggle at the antics. The monster is shown as unformed and energetic and many parents and siblings may recognise a toddler. The end has a nice twist with the monster able to recognise wildness in newcomers. Great fun. Recommended for preschoolers.
Mrs. Mo’s Monster, Paul Beavis Gecko Press 2014 ISBN: 9781927271018
review by Claire Saxby, Children’s author and bookseller