I Want to be in a Scary Story, by Sean Taylor and Jean Jullien, with endpapers from some of our scary (not really) stories. Little Monster wants to be in a story, but not any story, a scary story. The author of the story and Little Monster converse with one another, trying to figure out the setting and storyline of Little Monster’s scary story. When a decision is made—starting the story in a dark and scary forest—Little Monster gets nervous. Changes occur. Warnings are given. “…something scary is going to happen.” says the author. “What?” jitters Little Monster. “You go inside, and a creepy witch will jump out.” Little Monster’s reply to this is simple and hilarious. “Ok,” he says, with an absolutely terrified look on his face. “Oh Yikes and Crikes!”
Full spread illustrations are interrupted with pages of white—the interactions between the author and Little Monster, the adjustments made to the story. Though Little Monster very bravely faces a witch and a ghost, it’s far too frightening being the one who is scared. Little Monster wants to do the scaring. But wait, more changes are made. Little Monster now wants the story to be funny—he wants it to be fun—and he plays a sneaky, scary trick on the author.
Halloween is one month away. This book is a cheerful story, scary but not really story, a read-aloud for kids aged 4 to 8 years. It’s a wonderful resource for teaching creative writing, understanding what’s involved in the creative process, the time and thought that’s put into a story, and the relationships that are formed between creator and character. Little Monster is a loveable character, who doesn’t fit the typical monster mould—this being an example that personalities don’t have to be predetermined. A monster doesn’t have to be scary. Witches and ghosts can have a bit of fun too. This book is bold and bright and a LOT of fun!!!