Book Review: Monsters A to Z, A.J. Cosmo (2012)

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

A is for Adorkable

four out of five stars

Ever wonder where your house keys and cell phone disappeared to? A Jingrel might just be to blame! Or how about that elusive television remote control? If it’s always vanishing on you, your house might be home to a Me-Me.

Beautifully illustrated, with imaginative and entertaining entries, Monsters A to Z is a guide to the lesser-known monsters, from Aargmonths to Zoots and everyone in between. These monsters range from the gentle and pure of heart (Dock Divers, who abhor litter) to the troublesome and truly nefarious (the mac and cheese-stealing Brusselsnatches; these baddies will stone you with your own vegetables if you’re not careful). There are bipeds and quadrupeds; monsters with only two limbs, and monsters with up to eight; beaked creatures, flying creatures, and creatures with unicorn horns; fluffy little buggers who resemble Tribbles; masters of disguise; and even aquatic monsters who live under the sea.

More adorable than scary, most of the monsters found here are masters of everyday mischief and mayhem. The artwork is suitable for kids of all ages, with nothing too gross or terrifying; and, while some reviewers noted that the language is too sophisticated for younger readers, I didn’t get that impression at all. Then again, I don’t have any kids, so grain of salt.

As far as language goes, I wish Cosmo had opted to use the personal pronouns he/she in place of it, which is objectifying to presumably sentient animals. These monsters are someones, not somethings, yo!

This full-color book is best viewed on a laptop, PC, or iPad, but is also easily readable on a Kindle.

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