Eat Your People by Lou Kuenzler and David Wojtowycz
|Eat Your People by Lou Kuenzler and David Wojtowycz|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Ruth Ng|
|Summary: Great for picky eaters, less good for those of a squeamish nature!|
|Buy? yes||Borrow? yes|
|Pages: 32||Date: August 2016|
|Publisher: Orchard Books|
|External links: Author's website|
Monty the monster is having his dinner. He is eating all of his vegetables without any problems at all, but when it comes to eating up his people he really isn't happy, declaring them to be chewy and crunchy and full of bones! In a funny twist on the picky eater story, this is a lighthearted way of broaching the tricky 'eat your vegetables' issue!
My four year old son really enjoyed this book. We had it as a bedtime story every night for a week, so it certainly went down well with him. I have to say, I felt a little odd the first time I read it, seeing the daddy monster merrily eating one big mouthful of people, all of whom look scared and shocked as they tumble into his mouth, for obvious reasons! So, you may need to gird your loins a little if you get a little squeamish over these things. There's no blood and guts and gore, but it is sometimes a little disconcerting, seeing the poor people being eaten! However, if we set the unsettling nature of the story to one side, this is of course a very funny picture book. We all know a picky eater. I was dreadful as a child, so much so that whenever I see my parents nowadays they seem to always be exclaiming 'you don't eat that do you?! It can always be a challenge to persuade children to eat certain things, usually green things... so this funny twist to a picky eater brings a lightness to what can be a stressful situation, and perhaps allows a different look at the situation for worn-out parents!
Mummy monster is going for the age-old bargaining chip, in that there will be no pudding unless Monty eats all of his people. I like Mummy monster. She remains firm when Monty attempts to bargain with her, allowing no negotiations and even heading down the I'm counting to three…' route! Meanwhile, Monty's sister Monica offers to eat all of Monty's for her. I did think that this scenario was less likely (I certainly don't see my older daughter offering to eat any broccoli for her little brother!) but she is big sisterly in other ways, including laughing at her brother so hard that her drink comes out of her nose! Dad remains serious, reading his paper whilst waiting for Monty to finish and calling out helpful dad-isms such as 'don't play with your food'!
You'll be pleased to hear that Monty does manage to eat one whole big mouthful of people in the end, when promised with his favourite pudding. (I find it's best not to think about his description of how crunchy, wriggly and jiggly the people are as he eats them!) I did wonder what on earth his pudding might be, after all that, but found myself laughing at the answer. I won't spoil it for you but will let you discover it for yourself.
The illustrations throughout the story are very well done, light-hearted and funny. The monster family are all a good mixture of silly and scary. It's fun to look at what's happening on Monty's plate on each page, with his people. I really liked the page with Dad monster reading the paper as you can read a couple of the stories on the front page which add a little extra for the grown ups to enjoy. I also really liked the page when Monty finally loads up his spoon with people and his family are looking on, eagerly awaiting to see him manage to eat his people all in one go. Their expressions are great, and there's a real sense of anticipation.
I can see that some parents might not be able to stomach this book, but I felt that overall it was funny rather than disturbing, and it can be helpful to diffuse what might otherwise be a stressful dinner time if you start calling out 'eat your people' to your own little fusspot, rather than 'eat your peas'! And more important than my own feelings, my little boy absolutely loved it and wanted to hear it again and again!
Further reading suggestion: For more help with picky eaters, you could also try Nutmeg Says Yum! by Caroline Jayne Church and Eat Up, Little Donkey by Rindert Kromhout and Annemarie van Haeringen.
You can read more book reviews or buy Eat Your People by Lou Kuenzler and David Wojtowycz at Amazon.co.uk.
You can read more book reviews or buy Eat Your People by Lou Kuenzler and David Wojtowycz at Amazon.com.
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