'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Saturday 14 October 2017

Review: The Amazing Monster Detectoscope

In The Amazing Monster Detectoscope, Graeme Base, as always, delivers an incredibly detail-filled creation.

With a cute dog as the central character, we get to explore a perfectly normal house and backyard. At least that's what we're supposed to think.

The dog carries a monster detectoscope, a gadget that enables you to see monsters lurking beneath everyday objects.

And this is where I give a small warning.

In my opinion, and that of a mother I shared it with, for some young children this book could lead to bad dreams. This would particularly be the case for any children who have not yet learned the difference between real and pretend.

You the reader can 'see' through the dog's monster detectoscope by moving the viewfinder wherever it appears, to reveal monsters in the sofa, amongst shelves full of toys, in the cupboard under the stairs, and down the toilet. There's even a monster in disguise as a garbage truck.

At one point, even the dog is just a bit scared, and runs from the house as it appears to turn into a giant monster. But he ultimately turns and faces his fears.

Its scary potential aside, The Amazing Monster Detectoscope is an amazing creation. The way a giant, reptilian-like eye appears in the window of the dryer, and garbage in the bin under the sink comes to life with gruesome faces, is clever and was enough to make me shiver a little myself.

The Amazing Monster Detectoscope is quite a large and robust book, square, with thick, strong pages to hold the viewfinder mechanism.

The narrative, from the perspective of the dog, is told in rhyme, with the dog moving from location to location as it tracks the monsters down.

If you are a Graeme Base fan, you will not be disappointed with The Amazing Monster Detectoscope, and it is sure to also win a whole new legion of young fans.

Can you face your fears and the monsters hidden in plain sight? Grab a copy of The Amazing Monster Detectoscope and find out.

Title: The Amazing Monster Detectoscope
Author: Graeme Base
Illustrator: Graeme Base
Publisher: Viking, $29.99
Publication Date: October 2017
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780670079308
For ages: 7+
Type: Picture book