What to Read After... Mr Gum 19/08/19
Dave the Lonely Monster
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
A monster called Dave is banished to a 'retirement cave' after he causes too much of a ruckus. He now lives out his days in a gentle fashion – taking baths, reading monster mysteries, and cracking on with his knitting.
Then along comes Percival the Brave, determined to defeat 'the fiendish monster'. It's not the best of starts – but could they ever be friends?
There is something very retro and a bit Pink Floyd about Dave and his surroundings. His home is purple (like him) and strewn with rock n' roll debris: band posters, an electric guitar and a discarded motorbike helmet. The level of detail from Sara Ogilvie is spectacular.
Parents (and grandparents) may read about Dave's slide into gentility with a nostalgic glint in their eyes for their own antics "back in the day". Percival and Dave's relationship also underscores a nice message about bridging the generational divide – grown-ups like to have fun, too!
Meanwhile, Anna Kemp's funny, lively rhyme is sure to suck children into the story. Boisterous ones may especially relate to Dave, who is told off by 'folks who like things nice and neat'. After all, sometimes things can get too well-behaved and BORING.
All in all, this is a joy of a picture book, with a warm and feel-good centre. Monster rave, anyone?