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There's an Alligator under My Bed

4.11  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,520 Ratings  ·  141 Reviews
The There's a Nightmare In My Closet, bringing back that story's imaginative young hero for an even funnier nighttime adventure. Full-color illustrations.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 30th 1987 by Dial Books
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Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice SendakThe Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric CarleThe Giving Tree by Shel SilversteinGreen Eggs and Ham by Dr. SeussGoodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Best Children's Books
372nd out of 3,571 books — 5,310 voters
The Enormous Crocodile by Roald DahlLyle, Lyle, Crocodile by Bernard WaberAlligator's Friends by Jenifer Purcell RosenbergThere's an Alligator under My Bed by Mercer MayerHooray for Amanda & Her Alligator! by Mo Willems
Crocodiles And Alligators In Picture Books
4th out of 24 books — 6 voters

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Community Reviews

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Brittany Young
Oct 02, 2011 Brittany Young rated it liked it
I honestly think I liked this book most for its insight into a child’s mind. Children’s minds truly work this way, they do these things and they believe that there is a monster of some kind under their bed. I liked however, that there was a surprise. There was an alligator under the child’s bed, at least according to him. As an adult aged reader, that was a surprise to me, but to a child reader I bet this was no surprise at all, of course the alligator came out to get food! Obviously, due to the ...more
Jun 06, 2016 Rossy rated it it was ok
Shelves: children-s
Cool illustrations, but I think a kid could get scared reading this.
Oct 07, 2011 Kathryn rated it really liked it
So darn cute! I loved this story, the sweet and humorous illustrations, and the resourceful kid who solved the problem of that pesky alligator under his bed--all by himself! It's just darling.

Of course, I'm a grown-up and no alligator has lived under my bed for quite some time so this book did not scare me at all and I think it's a good one for helping to overcome scary nighttime imaginings :-) But, some children may be frightened by it, see this fine review for example:
Jan 11, 2009 Dolly rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Shelves: childrens, 2009
I like Mercer Mayer's stories and this has a catchy title, so we checked it out at the library. I think it actually scared our 6 year old, but I was able to convince her that there are no alligators in Hawaii, so it wasn't overly traumatic. Not sure if this is the best story to read to younger children!
Kim Vu
Feb 15, 2015 Kim Vu rated it liked it
There's and Alligator under My Bed, by Mercer Mayer, is a story of a little boy who knows there is an alligator hiding under his bed. He has not seen it, and neither has his parents, but he knows without a doubt that it is there. One night he decides to lead it away with food and traps it in the garage for his dad to find in the morning.

The illustrations were very simplistic sketches, but most everything had very soft edges. For example, there is not use of black in the story, everything is made
Anna Baize
Jan 31, 2015 Anna Baize rated it liked it
The common childhood fear of having some sort of monster or animal under the bed comes to life in this story by Mercer Mayer. The main character believes there is an alligator living under his bed, but whenever his parents look it hides, so he has to take measures into his own hands. He laves a trail of bait into his garage, and watches one night as the alligator follows his trail, and he traps it in the garage, and finally he makes sure to let his dad know to watch out for the alligator the nex ...more
Caitlin Labenz
Nov 05, 2014 Caitlin Labenz rated it it was amazing
The story "There's an Alligator under my Bed", by Mercer Mayer, is about this little boy that thinks that there is an alligator that is trapped under his bed. When he calls his family into check under the bed they couldn't see any alligator. At the end of the story he finds that there wasn't an alligator under the bed.
The theme for this story is innocent, and happiness. I loved that the boy is so relatable to so many other children in this world. When I was a child I was always afraid that some
Clara Hamilton
Oct 22, 2014 Clara Hamilton rated it liked it
This book follows a boy who finds an alligator under his bed. He gets scared, so he calls to his parents, but they do not believe him and tell him to go to sleep. Since they do not believe him, he takes action into his own hands, and thinks of a way to get rid of the alligator. He gets food from the fridge that the alligator likes, and makes a trail of it to follow to the garage. The alligator follows the trail and get locked in the garage, and the boy writes a note to his father, telling him ab ...more
Briana Nelson
Apr 29, 2014 Briana Nelson rated it liked it
This was one of my favorite books growing up. I really enjoy this book because it's very simple, and surrounds a common childhood fear of monsters under the bed. As an older, that was a surprise to me, but to a child this plot was no surprise at all, of course the alligator came out to get food! Obviously, due to the assignment this is a primary age appropriate read. The vocabulary is not particularly difficult, and there is only a small amount of text on each page. The illustrations reminded me ...more
May 11, 2011 Eileen added it
Recommends it for: bad parents
Shelves: kids, fear-based
Yet another book aimed at instilling fear in children.
Sure, if you've already taught your kid how to be afraid of "monsters" in their room then I suppose this is a good book for them.

Unfortunately the book also tells your kids that it's ok to take all of the food out of the refrigerator and strew it along the floor, enticing the monster out of their room.

If you've made your kid THAT anxious, then probably this would be a good thing for your kid to read/do.
Jul 24, 2015 Authorscreateireview rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Parents with Children
In the book, There's An Alligator Under My Bed by Mercer Mayer, it's about a little boy who is not your normal little boy. He doesn't think there is monsters in his closet or under his bed. But, he thinks there is an alligator lurking under his bed. He jumps into his bed trying to make sure that his feet don't come close to the alligator and even begs his parents to look for this creature. Of course the parents don't see the alligator and he decided it was time for himself to get rid of it. He c ...more
Guadalupe Sanchez
Dec 09, 2014 Guadalupe Sanchez rated it really liked it
There’s an alligator under my bed by Mayer Mercer
Genre: fiction Reading level: 4-8 ages Format: good

There’s an alligator under my bed is about a little boy who was scared to go to bed because he thought he had an alligator under his bed. Once day he called his mother and father to tell him about the alligator but his parents never saw him. He then got different foods to trap the alligator and finally the alligator came out to get food. The little boy finally saw the alligator and followed lock
So even though I've technically never read this book until now, I still consider it a book of my childhood. Because there's a story behind me and this book. When I was in kindergarten and they had all these books they were giving away at the library, they talked about a couple of them beforehand--this being one of them. I remember really, really, really wanting to get my hands on it badly. Well, sadly some other little girl got it before me, and there were no more copies. I'd cried about it and ...more
Shannon Stinnette
Jan 28, 2014 Shannon Stinnette rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
This is a book about a boy who thinks there is an alligator under his bed. No one is able to see the alligator but him. It is a good book to prompt discussions about being alone and being afraid of the dark. I think this a cute book to teach cause and effect as the main character "lures" the alligator by using food and candy from his room to the garage. I think children will find the illustrations entertaining. Classroom discussions can involve the applications of what the boy has done (lure the ...more
Aug 25, 2015 Krissy rated it it was amazing
There's an Alligator Under My Bed by Mercer Mayer, is an awesome book that all my children love! We read this book together before bed and all my kids thought it was funny. A little boy thinks there is an alligator under his bed. He knows the alligator is there, however, when he looks its always hides. So instead of being afraid, he is brave and lures the alligator to the garage! This book can be for bravery or touch on imagination / imaginary things. I personally loved this book, as well. The p ...more
Jonathan Andrew
Mar 29, 2016 Jonathan Andrew rated it liked it
In this book, a young boy knows for certain he has an alligator under his bed. But anytime he or his parents look for it, he hides. He puts treats out for it to lure it out from under the bed, and it comes out. He follows it down the stairs and when it goes into the garage, he shuts the door behind it. He leaves a note on the door, telling his dad to be careful when he leaves for work in the morning. This was a cute book. It captures the imagination of a child well, and also the problem solving ...more
Caitlin W.
You can see the author/illustrator reading his book, with pans of the illustrations, here:

This is a twist on the monster-under-the-bed scenario-- a young boy is convinced that there is an alligator living under his bed, but when his parents look, the alligator hides somewhere so they don't believe him. He comes up with a plan to lure the alligator out from under his bed: he places a trail of various kinds of food from his room down to the garage, and when
Jordan Gonser
Feb 22, 2016 Jordan Gonser rated it really liked it
I like this book a lot because it reminds me of when I was a kid. I was always afraid there was a monster under my bed which isn't an alligator bootless enough. And I'm sure many kids feel this way about their bed or closet. Which when reading this book you can make up a good story to tell while looking at the pictures. It's cute how he puts out all this food to lead the alligator to another room and locks him in there! Very good picture book with clear self explanatory pictures.
A cute story about a little boy who has an alligator under his bed, and how he gets rid of it. Very cute. I love the Alligator's mischievous expression when he is peeking out from under the bed.
My little girl (age 2) enjoyed this one. I was worried at first that maybe this would cause her to be afraid of something under her bed, so when I read it to her I would say things like "silly alligator - he's hiding under the bed", "see how he is laughing and playing hide and seek?"; so now my little on
Christina Greenberg
Nov 19, 2014 Christina Greenberg rated it liked it
Everyone, at one time or another, has felt that there is something hiding underneath out beds. For me it was the boogy-man. In the book There’s an alligator under my bed, it’s an alligator. The language in the books is easy to read. The images alternate between are full bleeds and framed pages. It is a pretty basic books but the images do match the text and aide the reader in figuring out the text. Overall, an enjoyable book that allows the reader much to laugh and think about.
Mar 19, 2014 Ashley rated it really liked it
Shelves: books
This book is about a young boy who believes there’s an alligator living under his bed, and gets the alligator out from under his bed. No one else believes that there is an alligator under his bed.

I chose this book because I thought it was a fun book to have in the class. Some students may have this fear and this book shows them they can be braver that what they thought they were.
Questions- Is this real or make-believe?
What would you have done to get the alligator from under your bed?
Anne Hennessey
Nov 15, 2015 Anne Hennessey rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
There’s an Alligator under My Bed is a picture book with an easy to follow story line. Children love this book. Most children are afraid of something and this book lends itself to talking about feelings, and how to deal with those feelings. You could use this book, with a feelings theme, or for older children after reading the book have them write a similar story. The book has great pictures and even ELL children can easily make predictions as to what will happen next.
Jun 26, 2014 Kyjafree rated it really liked it
the boy knew there was an alligator under his bed so when it was time for him to go to sleep he couldn't so he called his parents in his room and told them and they checked but there was nothing there. so he put a trail of things that alligators like and the alligator came out and followed the trail into the garage. and he lock him in there in was wondering about his dad getting in his car for work
Kristen Nickell
As a child, this was one of my favorite books to read at my grandma's house and I picked it up at my local library for the sake of nostalgia. I was delighted to find that the magic in Mercer Mayer's story was still there. The theme and the illustrations make it a fun book for kids of all ages to read and for even bigger kids to revisit.
Mar 16, 2011 Alana rated it it was amazing
There are books from your childhood that are indelibly burned into your imagination... and Mercer Mayer's There's an Alligator Under My Bed is one of those books for me. The story of a boy planning to lure out the alligator from under his bed is coupled with illustrations that I can recall with near perfect clarity. Perhaps it's because I never found the generic "monsters" genre to be all that scary, I appreciated Mayer's alligator substitution. In addition, Mayer provided a practical plan for a ...more
Jan 13, 2009 Mary rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone who has an alligator in their bedrooms
I should give this book a 5 for my grandchildren; it has been their most requested book at the turning 3 stage, though I certainly don't find it as enthralling as they obviously do. It bothers me some that they don't understand that there really ISN'T an alligator under the bed! They show me, "there he is!" but he seems like a fairly decent kind of guy and nothing bad happens, so I'm guessing they are using this book to approach the usual childhood fears of the dark and of what's under the bed. ...more
Jul 10, 2014 Sharon rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-help, childrens
Another recommended summer book choice for kids and a solid option. This simply illustrated book is perfect for all creative problem solvers as well as any conflict avoiders and resolution deflectors in the world regardless of their age ... read up!
Feb 23, 2016 Marcos rated it it was amazing
It was funny when he made a path of food that alligators like to eat. He made it all the way to his garage but then he was wondering how his dad was going to get to work. Then he just left a note with a picture of an alligator.
Oct 30, 2014 Maggie rated it it was amazing
So that's why I was afraid of alligators underneath my bed when I was growing up. It was in my subconscious, apparently. My dad used to read this to me as a kid, but I didn't remember the book until I found it last year.
Jun 05, 2016 kristina rated it really liked it
Picture Book, Alligators, Bedtime

The alligator under his bed makes a boy's bedtime a hazardous operation, until he lures it out of the house and into the garage. Sequel to "There's A Nightmare In My Closet"
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I began illustrating books in 1966. Since that time I have published over 300 books. Most of my books are about things that happened to me when I was a little kid. Now I'm a big kid and I write about things that happen now, especially with my own children. They always remind me of what it was like.

I was born in Arkansas in 1943. Boy, that was a long time ago! It's real fun to be an old kid. Then m
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