Wednesday, October 29, 2008

No More Monsters: Go Away, Big Monster by Ed Emberley

"Make it go away," the toddler plaintively requests, and in this classic die-cut book, Caldecott artist Ed Emberley's Go Away, Big Green Monster! gives the very young reader exactly that option.

The cover shows a not-so-scary green-faced monster with yellow eyes glowing through the die-cut circles in the board cover. As the book is opened, we hear that

Big Green Monster has two big yellow eyes.

In fact, all we see are the big yellow eyes on a jet-black page. But this is a Build-A-Monster book, and with each page turn we add a first a "long bluish, greenish nose," and then a "big red mouth" with "sharp white teeth," "two little squiggly ears," and "scraggly purple hair."

YOU DON'T SCARE ME! reads the text at that point, and turning the next page, we find out why! Now comes the fun of disassembling the monster, making each feature go away as we turn the remaining pages until at last even the big yellow eyes are all gone, leaving the black endpaper of the cover. For even more fun, we can make the monster come back and go away again by paging backward through the book!

Talk about empowering the reader! Emberley's skillful design gives the monster-averse child total control over this monster as he appears and disappears before our eyes. For kids who find spooks and monsters mostly frightful, this book is cheaper and more fun than a trip to a therapist!

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  • I just read this book to a group of pre-school children. They loved it so much, I responded to a chorus of "Read it again!" I have to admit, I read this one over and over when our kids were little, too.
    All best,

    By Blogger Wild About Words, at 12:42 PM  

  • Thanks for your comment! Books like this one are worth a second look!

    By Blogger GTC, at 6:16 PM  

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