Sunday, March 1, 2015

Review: Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes

Title: Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes
Publisher: Pelican Publishing
Pages: 32
Review copy: Digital ARC via publisher
Availability: On shelves now

Summary: Enter an enchanted land of mythical creatures where manticores reign and ogres roar. With a unique twist on traditional rhymes, Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes presents a darker approach to these childhood classics, and yet the sing-song nature of the poems renders them playful and jovial at the same time. Little Witch Muffet is not frightened by a silly, little spider; she adds him to her stew! If you enjoy mischief and have a penchant for the morbidly hilarious, the rhymes will satisfy your mythological curiosity. The book also includes a "bestiary" with information about the book's legendary creatures.

Review: A troll, witch, manticore, zombie and ogre may not be the characters you expect in a nursery rhyme, but that's who you will find here. This is the perfect nursery rhyme collection for the fantasy lover as it features many unusual beasts.

When I heard the words Monster Goose, I immediately thought of the book of that title by Judy Sierra and figured that this concept had already been done. For those thinking the same thing, what sets them apart the most would be the illustrations. In this book, the illustrations are much more sophisticated. To see a few examples of the art, check out the Animoto below.

The artwork is a definite draw here, but the text is also fun by itself. The authors include a reference to each original rhyme with the titles so readers will know the "tune." If a creature is unfamiliar, there is also a bestiary at the end providing a description and its origin. The rhymes are slightly creepy and paired with the lush illustrations, this will be a fun title to share.

The only issue I have is the inclusion of a variation of 'Eenie Meenie, Miney, Mo!' I am just old enough that it is impossible to hear any form of that rhyme without a racist word popping into my mind. I could have done without that reference.

With only fourteen rhymes, this is actually a short book, but if fantasy is dear to your heart, this is one you'll want to see.

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