Monday, October 19, 2009
Review #47: Jeremy Draws a Monster
Gracie (age 9): "Jeremy Draws a Monster" is by Peter McCarty.
Dad: This is a departure from his regular style. Do you remember "Hondo and Fabian" or "T is for Terrible" or "Little Bunny on the Move"?
Gracie: Little Bunny! "Little Bunny, where are you going...?"
Dad: This is that same guy.
Gracie: Definitely a different style.
Lily (age 6): The most fun thing about this book is the drawings.
Isaac (age 11): Some of it is colored, some of it is just black and white.
Gracie: Peter McCarty's drawings are totally sweetness.
Dad: Alright, so tell me what the story was about...
Isaac: There once was this kid named Jeremy, and he never went outside because he liked to draw. One time when he got bored he drew a monster.
Gracie: Jeremy had a magical pen!
Dad: Was it a magic pen? The book never said it was magic. It just says "fancy pen."
Gracie: It's got to be magic.
Dad: I suppose so -- the monster did come to life.
Gracie: I want a fancy pen too.
Lily: Jeremy got in trouble -- because it's a monster!
Gracie: The monster says, "Give me a hamburger. Give me a sandwich. Give me a hot dog. Give me cake. Give me a toaster. I like toast. Give me. Give me. Give me a fancy hat!"
Isaac: Jeremy got angry. And a little annoyed. So he drew the monster a bus ticket and a suitcase and threw him on the bus. And it drove away, never to be seen again. Because it was only a one way ticket.
Dad: The story kind of reminds me of you guys.
Isaac: What do you mean?
Dad: Mom and I made you guys. And now you need all this stuff. Maybe we should stick you on the bus.
Gracie: If you did that, Mom would be sad for the rest of her days.
Lily: When the monster leaves, there is a rainbow colored flower thing in the sky, and it is awesome. That was my favorite part. It was a rainbow made out of colored flowers. (Lily starts singing) "Yeah! He's leaving because he made so much trouble... so I got him out finally! Out of the house!"
Gracie: Jeremy finally has to go outside to put the monster on the bus, which is a cool coincidence because Jeremy finds some friends and they play ball.
Lily: Now there is a friend. Jeremy will always go outside now.
Gracie: I still don't feel like the monster is gone for good.
Dad: So what did you think of that monster?
Gracie: "Gimme, gimme, gimme. I'm selfish, I'm selfish. Gimme, gimme, gimme. Blah, blah, blah."
Dad: Can you describe what the monster looks like?
Gracie: He's freaky.
Isaac: He's cool.
Gracie: Awesomeness freaky.
Lily: He's a blue oval with freaky toes and horns.
Isaac: And flowers all over him.
Dad: I love his cheeks and the lines that go to his nose. Aren't those weird?
Gracie: Those are freaky.
Dad: That's the coolest part! The line that goes cheek to nose -- so cool.
Gracie: Jeremy and the monster both have 3's on their shirts.
Dad: I don't think the monster is wearing a shirt.
Isaac: He's naked.
Gracie: He's a naked monster!
Lily: The monster has a number 3 on his belly. Because the boy has a number 3 on his shirt.
Dad: What do you think that means? Why do they both have 3's? Do you think it means that the things we create are part of ourselves?
Gracie: Jeremy's favorite number is 3. So he wears a 3. And he made his monster have a 3.
Dad: That's a much simpler explanation. I think you're probably right. Anything else you want to say about the pictures?
Isaac: Jeremy drew with pen -- and I think this book is probably made out of pen.
Gracie: Guess what! Peter McCarty made this book with his magic pen!
Dad: So, is this a book about creativity? Is it a book about greediness? Or is there no lesson - is it just fun?
Gracie: Don't be greedy or else your parents will put you on a bus.
Isaac: I think it's about creativity. Because Jeremy has a good imagination.
Dad: But would it encourage creativity or discourage it? Jeremy found himself in pretty big trouble. Maybe the point is: Be careful what you draw?
Gracie: Yes. Like one time, I drew a picture, and I got punished for it.
Dad: Yeeeeeah..... We won't describe what the picture was, will we?
Dad: That's an episode of life we'd like to forget. But we did learn there are consequences for our actions.
Gracie: Yes, you punished me!
Dad: Now, Jeremy's magic pen could bring things to life. Would you guys want to have a pen like that?
Dad: But what happened when Jeremy had a pen like that? Did it turn out good or bad?
Gracie: It turned out bad. But I would only draw fluffy little kitties.
Dad: What if the fluffy little kitties were demanding?
Isaac: Make them with no mouths.
Gracie: Yeah - I would make them with no mouths.
Dad: How are they going to eat stuff if they don't have mouths?
Gracie: There's a little tube in their heads.
Dad: What? So you ARE making a monster! By the time you're done describing these kitties with no mouths and tubes on top of their heads... I think you've just designed a monster!
Gracie: Awesome! I'm going to draw that! Right now!
Lily: If I had a magic pen, I would draw Evie.
Dad: We already have baby Evie. Would you draw her again so she could have a twin?
Dad: Isaac, what would you draw if you had a pen that could bring things to life?
Isaac: I would draw another magic pen so if the first one broke, I'd have another one.
Dad: You'd make some backup?
Isaac: I'd make a million magic pens.
Dad: Where do you think the monster went on the bus?
Gracie: Jeremy put the monster on a bus to go to a happy land of wonderness. The monster hopped off the bus, and he saw a glorious land of magic monsters... and my tube cat. And he said "Look at all the butterflies. I want a sandwich!"
Dad: Lovely. Are there any last things you want to say about this book?
Gracie: Draw me a sandwich!
Dad: Anything you want to say to Peter McCarty?
Gracie: I have words to Peter McCarty. You should make more books like this. This style is totally the latest look for books.
Author/Illustrator: Peter McCarty
Published, 2009: Henry Holt
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