Some books automatically make you put on a silly voice when you read them to the kids. The Fearsome Beastie is one of them ! I don't know if it's because it's all written in rhyme or because of the great expressions on the characters' faces in the illustrations but I couldn't help putting on scary voices that had the kids squealing with laughter.
The story isn't particularly original, in fact it's very reminiscent of Red Riding Hood (except this time it's the granny as the woodcutter doing the rescuing, not waiting to be rescued herself). But I love the way it plays with kids' expectations. When the monster sends the kids screaming then sits down to cry because he just wants to play, I could see 6-year-old Juliette (not to mention 9-year-old Sophie who was watching and listening while trying to pretend she wasn't !) visibly soften. Then when he leapt up and ate them all anyway, they let out a collective gasp because he broke the unspoken rules of kids' stories ! They giggled "eeeuuurrggghhh" at the deliciously yucky pictures of the beastie being cut in half and his eyes bobbing about in the soup that the granny made out of him. But they went to bed giggling and I know there won't be any nightmares.
It's a fun story to read for kids and parents alike.
star rating : 5/5
RRP : £5.99
Paperback: 32 pages
Publisher: Maverick Arts Publishing (18 May 2011)
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