I first bet Giles Paley-Phillips on twitter, I follow a few writers and illustrators and one day his tweet about his book The Fearsome Beastie caught my eye. Soon after Giles kindly sent me a selection of books including The Fearsome Beastie and Roo and I began our adventures in the world of monsters and things that go bump in the night. So when Giles told me about his new book Tamara Small and the Monsters’ Ball I was dying to read a copy because quite frankly this man writes the best kids stories we’ve had in our house for quite some time.
Anyone who knows us knows that books are MASSIVE in this house. My office contains two bookshelves that have 10 shelves on full to the brim of books. Roo has an entire corner of her room devoted to books and we read two or three stories every night without fail.
Tamara Small and the Monsters’ ball is the sort of story that as a parent your sensible head goes ‘ooh it’s about monsters and things pinching you out of bedrooms, I can’t read this for bedtime my child will be scared’. Then the other side of you comes out and says ‘don’t be stupid it’s a brilliantly funny story about night time adventures and having fun’.
For those of you who haven’t read it or indeed any of Giles’ books you simply have to put them into your reading arsenal – your kids will love you, seriously love you for purchasing the most brilliantly written, fantastically illustrated story books.
In the book Tamara has gone to sleep with Ted but outside her room she sees a shadow and through her window comes a big hairy hand! Tamara starts to cry as the monster picks her up but all he does is wipe her tears and take her off to the most mystical of night time events…the annual monsters ball!
Much to Tamara and Ted’s surprise the monsters are kind and considerate, and jolly good fun. Tamara and Ted get down to the groove with every spooky and ghoulish guest and with guests like a break dancing werewolf what little girl wouldn’t have a good time. At the end of the night, when Tamara is tired and it’s time to go home the monsters present her with a special parting gift of a cake made of slime! This apparently is a sincere gesture from monsters and only given to those special girls and boys who attend the annual monsters ball (so Giles tells me).
The rhyming text and colourful illustrations really set this book out as an excellent choice for children, whatever time of year - we’ve been reading it pretty much non stop and it even got taken into Roo’s school when it arrived and read to the nursery class, the reception room and year 1!
If you can I highly recommend getting a copy in preparation for Halloween, as it is a great book to read at a Halloween party or in preparation for some trick or treating.
With an assortment of monsters featured (werewolf, Dracula, goblin, ghosts and even a giant snake!) whatever they feared they might now accept…
Tamara Small and the Monsters’ Ball is published by Maverick Books and if you pop along to their website you can even download some brilliant Tamara Small and the Monsters’ Ball colouring sheets!