Tamara Small and the Monster's Ball by Giles Paley-Phillips and Gabriele Antonini
|Tamara Small and the Monster's Ball by Giles Paley-Phillips and Gabriele Antonini|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: An unusual approach to the 'nighttime fears' genre of picture books, as our heroine is snatched away from her bed to attend the monsters' ball.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 32||Date: October 2012|
|Publisher: Maverick Arts|
|External links: Author's website|
On a dark and windy night Tamara Small lies awake in bed, clutching Ted. There's something stirring in the garden and when she and Ted go to look out of the window there's something moving around and making a grizzly sound. As the pair dash back to bed a monster breaks through the window and whisks them away - to the old village hall which is where the Annual Monsters' Ball is being held. And what a collection of monsters it is! I saw skeletons, goblins, ghosts and ghouls, witches in black pointy hats and a few other monsters that defy description. And what happened to Tamara? Well, she had a ball...
Told in rhyme, it's a little bit scary in the beginning and the idea of being snatched away by a monster (who - at the very least - is in need of a decent manicure) might not appeal to all children, but a little parental overacting should carry the moment for the most sensitive. Kids who love that frisson of fear will adore this part. But after she gets to the village hall Tamara literally does have a ball - dancing with every monster and even Ted gets a few twirls around the floor. And in the morning Tamara and Ted wake up safe and sound in bed.
It's a sideways look at nighttime fears, with the usual approach of showing that the child is not going to be snatched away being turned on its head and into fun. It's a lovely story beautifully complemented by Gabriele Antonini's outrageous, in-yer-face illustrations. Think of two colours which really shouldn't be on the same page and they'll be there. Think of a scary monster - and then add just a little quirk which makes you laugh when you spot it. Great stuff.
It's a paperback, but the production values are good, with quality covers and pages which will stand enthusiastic toddler handling as much as any paperback will. I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.
Children who do love that frisson of fear will appreciate our Top Ten Books For Children Who Love To Be Scared Silly. If your child is not happy about going to bed have a look at our Top Ten Picture Books For Overcoming Bedtime Woes.
You can read more book reviews or buy Tamara Small and the Monster's Ball by Giles Paley-Phillips and Gabriele Antonini at Amazon.co.uk.
You can read more book reviews or buy Tamara Small and the Monster's Ball by Giles Paley-Phillips and Gabriele Antonini at Amazon.com.
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