Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Monster at the End of This Book

When I was a kid, I absolutely adored The Monster at the End of This Book, published in 1971 by Little Golden Books.  In the book, now a perennial childhood favorite (it was voted one of the top 100 picture books of all time in 2012 by School Library Journal), the main character, Grover, is terrified of turning the page because he believes there will be a terrorizing monster on the very last one; as a result, he repeatedly tries to get the reader to collude with him in closing the book, and eventually resorts to constructing various barriers to keep the reader from moving forward (all of which are torn down by the child as he or she progresses in his or her reading). Grover discovers, however, along with the reader, that the monster at the end of this book is really himself, learning that he, all along, has been afraid of his own shadow. As they turn the pages, the children reading internalize the desire to get to the end of the story, savoring the suspense that builds each time they turn the page, while also learning that their worst fears are actually sometimes entirely in their imaginations.

So, yesterday, when I was digging around on the internet and discovered that there was an app devoted to The Monster at the End of This Book, I decided I had to check it out. At $4.99, it is rather pricey, but the cost is worth the benefits. The app really brings the experience of reading the book to life; Grover sounds just like you imagine he would sound, the effects of the brick walls, ropes, etc. are a lot of fun. I downloaded it at 2:30, gave it to Sophie, and at 3:30 she was still going strong, giggling away at Grover's fear.

This app is well worth your $5.00. Put it and this book in your parenting arsenal. ~Alice (aka jess)

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