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MONSTER MUSEUM by Marilyn Singer


by Marilyn Singer & illustrated by Gris Grimly

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-7868-0520-X
Publisher: Hyperion

This clever collection of 21 rhyming poems by the versatile Singer (Tough Beginnings: How Baby Animals Survive, p. 805, etc.) follows a group of schoolchildren on a field trip to a most unusual museum. The exhibits include a wide variety of monsters of every sort, including all the favorites from Count Dracula to King Kong, as well as lesser-known creatures such as a banshee and a man-eating plant. Each monster is shown in its museum exhibit, with the visiting children often shown in the foreground. The cleverly detailed watercolors by mysterious illustrator Gris Grimly (a pseudonym for Steven Soenksen) steal the show with hilarious humor and offer careful readers all sorts of visual jokes, with additional monsters peering out from unexpected locations. His monsters are charmingly spooky rather than grotesque, and the schoolchildren also have their own quirky personalities. Singer’s poems are lively and humorous (if not great literature), and they impart quite a bit of information about various famous monsters. A “Glos-scary” offers excellent definitions of all the monster variations, with enough concrete information and background to satisfy the most committed monster maniac. (Poetry. 5-10)