Moonlighting: Welcome to Monster Town by Ryan Hashka
THE SUN SETS ON MONSTER TOWN
AND THE CITY WAKES UP.
THE ZOMBIES ARE ON THEIR WAY TO WORK.
It's just another ho-hum workaday night in Monster Town. The yellow ghoul bus stops for monster kids to clamber aboard with their BatBoy lunchboxes in hand. Zombie office workers mumble their "How's it goin'?" to each other as they schlep to work with briefcases in one hand and a cuppa Joe in the other.
The ghost writers at the Monster City Gazette cover the news and crank out the haunt ads; and ghostmen with their monster mailbags dodge the usual dogs trying to bite their bony ankles as they deliver monster mail to Vampyra, Dr.Acula, and Lon Chaney. Master electrician Frank N. Stein, is ready to shock 'em all, and United Scare Lines is preparing a jetliner for takeoff.
With tongue firmly in cheek, Ryan Haska lets no old chestnut go unroasted in his Welcome to Monster Town (Christy Ottaviano Books) (Henry Holt, 2010). There are plenty of groaners in the brief text of his latest picture book for the primary reader, and although they may be old stuff to adults, they'll be fresh and new (and may require a bit of explanation) for youngsters new to spoofery. After all, that's the way these old gags live on to, er, haunt us. Who wouldn't giggle at vampires hard at work at--where else--the Monster Town Blood Bank? Second- and third-graders, who relish this kind of humor, will find this one, with its juicy visual gags done up in Hashka's appropriately monster-ish murky greens and blood red illustrations, good fun for the scary season.