Review Blog

Nov 06 2013

Spider sandwiches by Claire Freedman

cover image

Ill. by Sue Hendra. Bloomsbury, 2013. ISBN 9781408839157.
(Age: 4+) Picture book. Spiders. Humour. Verse. Reading this book aloud to a group of young people will cause gales of laughter and fun as the monster takes delight in having the most obnoxious things for his lunch. His yucky mucky food includes a slug milkshake, toe nail scramble eggs, grasshopper smoothie and much more. Each turn of the page will have cries of yuck and horror as they imagine the slurpy mess that evolves from the ingredients given. Not to be fazed by his diet, the monster uses the internet to send out for more stuff, even outer space is a tabletop of delights. On a picnic he has smelly fisheye cheese, back at home he ingests some cockroach curry. But teatime is his favourite, spider sandwich.
The illustrations are a treat. Bold bright colours cover the pages, showing the green monster at his worst, eating something very nasty indeed. Small creatures about to be eaten cover each double page as the monster gleefully puts evil things into his moth. The page where he is in his kitchen trying a new recipe that involves noodles, eels and bats' ears is a treat, and the following page with his monster friends shying away form his food at their picnic, shows that he is alone in his selection of food.
A fun filled read, sure to draw cries of dismay from the readers and listeners, the last page sums up everyone's idea of their favourite and not so favourite food. Kids will love to try work out a recipe which emulates what the monster eats, but using ingredients more pleasing to the palate.
Fran Knight

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