Ten Little Monsters by Mike Brownlow and Simon Rickerty

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Ten Little Monsters by Mike Brownlow and Simon Rickerty

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sam Tyler
Reviewed by Sam Tyler
Summary: Join ten friends who happen to be monsters as they are picked off one by one in this wonderfully illustrated counting book, that is also a little scary.
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: September 2016
Publisher: Orchard Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 9781408334034

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Halloween is a strange event, it has been increasingly Americanised and sold to children as a fun day of scary activities and sweets. However, if you think about it, dressing your child as an undead bride or blood sucking vampire actually seems a little odd. These are the same kids that get scared when Brian Blessed shouts on TV, yet they are happy to cover themselves in fake blood. Creating a book that is Halloween themed is a balance of making it exciting, but not scary; sometimes the books can be both.

Ten little monsters are all out together when one by one they are plucked away, be it by a werewolf, ghost or witch. How many of the tiny tykes will make it to the end of the book and a happy surprise? Teach your child all about counting from 10 to 1, whilst also padding their knowledge of the undead.

Ten Little Monsters is one of a series of counting books that has already covered the likes of pirates and princesses, but this time the duo tackle a holiday special in the form of Halloween and they go out all guns blazing. Each of the Little Monsters is a classic architype including a zombie, a mummy and a skeleton. They look cute, but when it comes down to it, they are monsters!

As an educational tool, Little Monsters is your classic ten to one counting book. The secret to these is a great theme and some good rhymes. Here the book is very strong. The monster theme is portrayed brilliantly by Rickerty's drawings, all spooky castles and mad monsters. Each double spread is packed with imagery and colour. Added to this is Brownlow's words that scan well, although one or two of them are a little tricky to pull off. What you get in the book is essentially a retelling of Ten Green Bottles, but portrayed in the form of a series of child kidnappings.

It is here that the book is a little of the scary side. It may seem obvious that a book all about walking corpses would make a child fearful, but the likes of BOO! by Jonathan Litton and Fhiona Galloway or the classic Funnybones show that with a deft hand the horrific can actually just be fun. Although Rickerty's illustrations are super cute and colourful there is a lot happening upon the page. There are monsters and Ghoulies and manifestations everywhere and the idea of the children going missing is a little scary.

Those readers that can make it to the end will be in for a reassuring surprise, but a more sensitive child may not make it that far. Ten Little Monsters is a wonderful book for the right child, but I have no doubt it may scare some little ones, so be aware of your child's levels of bravery before purchasing or borrowing this title.

There are other great counting books by the duo that do the same thing, but are less fearsome; Ten Little Pirates or Ten Little Dinosaurs are great examples.

Buy Ten Little Monsters by Mike Brownlow and Simon Rickerty at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Ten Little Monsters by Mike Brownlow and Simon Rickerty at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Ten Little Monsters by Mike Brownlow and Simon Rickerty at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Ten Little Monsters by Mike Brownlow and Simon Rickerty at Amazon.com.


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