Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Monster at the End of this Book

I recently talked to a friend and she mentioned this book to me.  I'm usually not a fan of books based on television shows, because they typically aren't very good.  I think the reason for this is that the authors of the books try too hard to format the book the same way that the show is formatted.  This doesn't always work in my opinion.  I don't think children are looking for the same thing in a book as they are in a television show, I know I'm not.  I believe that they just grow to love certain characters and the author's focus should be on the quality of the writing and story NOT the number of books they will sell or how fast they can pump out new books.

That being said, I adore this book.  I remember reading it as a child and loving it.  I think I was even scared the first few times that it was read to me.  In the book Grover isn't on Sesame Street, he is in a book.  He hears a rumor that there is a monster at the end of the book that you are reading, and urges you not to turn any pages. Of course you, the reader, don't listen.  Grover tries many things, including building a wall out of bricks and tying pages together to get the reader not to turn any more pages.

Finally you are at the page before the last page.  Grover resorts to begging you not to turn the page.  When you turn the page, guess who you find.  Grover.  Lovable, fuzzy Grover was the monster at the end of the book the whole time.  Grover now chides you for being scared while he was obviously not worried at all.  You will have a blast reading this with your child because on each page Grover's hair-brained schemes go wrong leaving children and parents laughing.

This is a classic story loved by many children (and adults).  I know I have a copy of it somewhere, but I'm sure that I'll end up buying another copy because I'm certain that Ava will love it as much as I did.  I'm pretty confident that Alyssa will enjoy the story as well and tap the pages urging me to read more and show her the pictures.  This book would work well for sequencing parts of a story.  You could even copy pages, cut them out and make a story line (like a timeline) using the pictures to see how much your child remembers about the story.

This book was followed up, years later, by "Another Monster at the End of this Book," starring Grover and Elmo. I'm not as sure about this story; I know I've read it at least once or twice in board book format, but its been years.  Perhaps I'll hit Barnes and Noble this weekend and get them both.  

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