Here’s a clever variation on the theme of the fear of monsters in the night. Dad’s first idea of reassurance is to pledge armed family back-up in the case of monster attack. He’ll be there with a frying pan if the monster isn’t deterred by Amir’s scariest face. However, far-sighted Amir worries that this may be a self-defeating strategy, with the monster’s parents being drawn into the fray as well as his own. Dad can see the logic of that and re-thinks, adding some subtle parental and child psychology which brings big and little humans together with their monster counterparts. Elizabeth Laird’s story is realised in Jenny Lucander’s vibrant illustrations in which the bedroom tilts and threatens to empty its contents as the combat builds up, only to be brought onto an even keel when the adults sit down to chat over a coffee and human child and monster child settle down to play on the rug. The story is based on a tale by Rumi, the thirteenth century Persian poet and Islamic scholar, whose work is gradually becoming better known in Western Europe, sometimes through reworking and updating like this for children.
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Illustrator: Jenny Lucander