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I Need My Monster
By Amanda Noll

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I Need My Monster

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I Need My Monster
By Amanda Noll
Illustrated by Howard McWilliam
Flashlight Press, 2009
ISBN: 978-097-997-462-5
Genre: Children's Picture Book, for Ages 4-8

Reviewed by Anna Dogole - April 7, 2010

If the monster that lives under your bed goes on vacation, what would you do? Most people would celebrate, but not Ethan, who really needs his monster to help him fall asleep. The monster in question is Gabe, and he's so terrifying that our hero is afraid to get out of bed, and is usually lulled quickly to sleep by the sound of Gabe's ragged breathing, his charming nose-whistling, and the tapping of his claws on the floor. But when Gabe's leaves for a week of fishing, what is Ethan to do?

For one who is resourceful the answer is simple, put in a request for a substitute monster and start holding auditions. One by one, substitute monsters arrive under his bed, but none meet his rigid requirements. One is even a girl monster, which just will not do for a boy! Worse, some of the monsters are so silly that they make him laugh instead of shivering in fear.

One of the first things that will grab your attention when you pick up a copy of I Need My Monster is the magnificent illustrations by Howard McWilliam, which depict the monsters in all their fanciful glory - from Ralph who is a professional monster who uses nail polish on his claws to Herbert who doesn't have any claws at all. While I might skip this book if the youngster in your life has a real fear of a monster under the bed, I highly recommend it for everyone else. Amanda Noll uses humor and wit to explain the boy's need for a monster under the bed, and why he is so particular about the required qualifications for a substitute monster. The end result is a charming story that most kids will find funny and not the least bit scary.

Please note: Although not marketed as a large print book, I Need My Monster is printed in a slight larger than 16-point font size, making it qualify as a large print book. Not only does this large font size make it easier for new readers to enjoy the book, it will also prove a boon to anyone needing, or desirous, of large print material to read out loud to little ones who cannot yet read on their own.


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