Synopses & Reviews
Fans of Oliver Jeffers will love this wondrous and playful story of an ordinary boy who becomes a hero
Shy, quiet Zig is trapped inside on a gray, rainy day when he sees a bright red umbrella blow by. He grabs the handle and--woosh!--off he goes to a faraway land where he meets a little yellow bird who desperately needs his help. Can Zig and his magic umbrella save the birds from the hairiest, scariest monster around?
Whimsical drawings full of glorious colors accompany minimal text in this tale of bravery, creativity, and friendship. Perfect for fans of Oliver Jeffers and Peter McCarty, this book will inspire kids to tell their own stories with pictures.
"Picture books commonly suggest that monsters, like certain bullies, are insecure and make marvelous playmates. Pint-size Leonardo, a case in point, is 'a terrible monster' because 'he couldn't scare anyone.' As he roars, two people exchange patronizing smiles, and a circus-style, curly-serif typeface implies silly humor rather than danger. Like a Muppet, Leonardo is knee-high with olive-drab fur, a monkey's tail, a pink nose and tiny white horns. 'He didn't have 1,642 teeth, like Tony,' a six-mouthed purple guy (a footnote explains, 'Not all teeth shown'), and 'he wasn't big, like Eleanor,' whose clawed feet (one sporting a pearl ankle bracelet) barely fit in the spread. Leonardo decides to pick on someone his own size, but when he successfully startles a moping boy, the child begins to wail about a broken toy in inch-tall italics that fill two pages. Leonardo decides that 'instead of being a terrible monster, he would become a wonderful friend,' and dispenses a consoling hug. Willems's (Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!) finale feels apt but syrupy; Leonardo's decision to be nice seems homiletic. Yet this is an appealing book, sketched in dark brown against grayish pastel backdrops, with evergreen lettering and highlighted key words. Leonardo accurately mimics a child's frustration at not being taken seriously; Willems suggests trying kindness to get attention. Ages 3-6. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[Leonardo's] antics to produce a scare will have youngsters laughing, while the asterisk next to the number of monster Tony's teeth (*note: not all teeth shown) will have grown-ups chuckling, too. A surefire hit." School Library Journal (Starred Review)
"[A] simple message-driven story, elevated by a smart, striking design....A winner for story hours, with plenty of discussion possibilities." Booklist
"[S]weetly original....The highly predictable ending is made fresh by the superb control of pacing, just-zany-enough sense of humor and body language readers have come to expect from the creator of Pigeon and Knufflebunny....Bravo!" Kirkus Reviews
"Schneider is on a roll. Following a Geisel Award for Tales for Very Picky Eaters
and a hilarious tale of just deserts in The Meanest Birthday Girl,
he upends the classic monster-under-the-bed story."
and#8212;Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Arnold's playful imagination is evident in Schneider's watercolor, pen-and-ink, and colored pencil illustrations, and his bravery becomes obvious when he investigates the noises he hears in the night. Use this book for discussions about facing fears."
and#8212;School Library Journal
"Schneider's watercolor creatures are a darling array of beaked, winged, clawed, and blubbered goofballs, supporting the text with just the right brand of off-center quirk."
"The funny monster names and the sight of them crowded into Arnold's bed will help get scaredy-cats to read this for the first time, and once they've seen how the story turns out, they will want this worthy successor to Mercer Mayer's classic There's a Nightmare in My Closet read over and over again."
and#8212;The Horn Book Magazine
"The real show-stealers here are the monsters themselves, who are mildly frightening with their nasty teeth and horrible claws but hilarious in their worried expressions."
and#8212;Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"A nifty story about the way our imaginations can get the better of us. . .This endearing picture book for 4- to 8-year-olds proves that, among other things, mother is always right."
and#8212;Wall Street Journal
Praise for Tales for Very Picky Eaters
and#8220;Finally, a wonderfully clever book on eating right! Brilliant work from Josh Schneider!and#8221;
and#8212;Portland Book Review and#160; and#8220;Stories with all the wit and good humor parents can often lose during dinner table battles.and#8221;
and#8212;Chicago Tribune and#160; and#8220;Eager and picky eaters alike will enjoy the wordplay and outrageous situations, which create humor from a familiar source of family tension.and#8221;
and#8212;Booklist and#160; and#8220;Wholly fresh and unexpected advice.and#8221;
and#8212;Kirkus and#160; and#8220;Sure to be a crowd pleaser.and#8221;
and#8212;School Library Journal
Leonardo is truly a terrible monster terrible at "being a monster." Despite his best efforts, he can't seem to frighten anyone, but when he discovers the perfect nervous little boy, can he finally be scary? Full color.
Leonardo is truly a terrible monster terrible at being a monster, that is.
Despite his best efforts, he can't seem to frighten anyone. But when he discovers the perfect nervous little boy, will he finally scare the tuna salad out of him?
Or will he think of something even better?
Leonardo is truly a terrible monster-terrible at being a monster that is. No matter how hard he tries, he can't seem to frighten anyone. Determined to succeed, Leonardo sets himself to training and research. Finally, he finds a nervous little boy, and scares the tuna salad out of him! But scaring people isn't quite as satisfying as he thought it would be. Leonardo realizes that he might be a terrible, awful monster-but he could be a really good friend.
Another hilarious, over-the-top take on a universal childhood issue from Theodor Seuss Geisel Award-winner Josh Schneider, this full color 32-page picture book offers a fresh and reassuring look at nighttime fears.
Creaking . . . Squeaking . . .and#160;Gnashing . . . Glinking . . . Under the bed, deep in the closet, behind the radiator . . . the bedtime monsters are stirring, and poor Arnold is too scared to fall asleep. Heand#8217;s powerless to get rid of themand#8212;and they don't seem to be more scared of him than he is of them, no matter what his mother says.and#160;But even the most terrible, horrible monster has to be afraid of something, as Arnold eventually finds out in this empowering tale of harnessing the imagination andand#160;conquering nighttime fears.
About the Author
Mo Willems won six Emmy Awards for his writing on Sesame Street. A renowned animator, he is the creator of two Caldecott Honor winners: Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale and Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!, as well as The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog!; Time to Say "Please"!; and Time to Pee! Mo lives with his family in Brooklyn, New York.