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Smarter Than a Monster: A Survival Guide

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  136 ratings  ·  42 reviews
No monster wants you to read this book. The more you know about monsters, the more you will know how to defeat them.

Little kids have big fears, which they often imagine to be scary creatures, like monsters. But this book helps explain how knowing "Monster Facts" can help kids outwit them.

Want to avoid monsters?

Fact: Monsters love dirt and grime, so when faced with two kids
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published October 1st 2019 by Shadow Mountain
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Average rating 4.03  · 
Rating details
 ·  136 ratings  ·  42 reviews

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Nicole M. Hewitt
This review and many more can be found on my blog: Feed Your Fiction Addiction

This tongue-in-cheek bedtime story will have parents trying not to bust out laughing as they describe to their kids all the surefire ways to avoid monsters. Here’s a short list of examples: All the dangerous monsters hang out under Mom & Dad’s bed, so you’ll want to stay in your own. Messy kids (and rooms) are monster attractors. Kids who brush their teeth usually survive to be teenagers (it was the “usually” that real
Oct 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love a good children’s book! It’s always a bonus if that book also has a good message. And awesome illustrations are a must! This book has all of that. And it’s written by Brandon Mull. Who wouldn’t love that?

I love the way this one’s written. It’s such a cute book and it teaches kids that there really is no need to be afraid of monsters. But it also teaches them sneaky ways to avoid monsters. Things like taking baths and cleaning their room. The author really did a great job with this!

And the
Oct 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fabulous bedtime story, this book is funny and absolutely adorable. This book encourages children to do day-to-day activities such as brush their teeth, clean their room, take a bath, etc. all while keeping the scary monsters away. The pictures in this book are marvelous. They are bright, fun, colorful and entertaining bringing to life this delightful story. Author Brandon Mull and illustrator Mike Walton have created a fabulous book that young children will absolutely love!

Genre: children’s,
Leelynn (Sometimes Leelynn Reads) ❤
Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Shadow Mountain Publishing for this free copy.

This was seriously the cutest picture book that I’ve read in a long time! The main gist of this is that if kids live a healthy lifestyle, then they can keep the teams of monsters away! I mean, it looks like it makes completely sense, and I think that a lot of kids will start to see a fun way to get kids to develop some good ha
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book by bestselling author, Brandon Mull, informs children about how to deal with monsters. It provides advice on the places monsters like to hide, and how to avoid becoming a monster snack. For parents, the book makes for a fun way to teach children the importance of brushing your teeth, taking baths, and keeping your room clean. I liked his point that Halloween is the safest day because monsters think its a big parade in their honor. A fun way to talk to children about over-active imagina ...more
Aimee (Getting Your Read On)
This book is the cutest! I absolutely adore it. Of course, as a parent, this book encourages kids to do everything you want them to do- brush their teeth, clean their rooms, sleep in their own beds, take a bath, etc.. I can really get behind a book like that! Yes, this book is filled with monsters, but they are more cute than frightening (as you can tell from the cover of this book). The illustrations are bright, engaging and fun. Youngsters will love looking at them. I love looking at them! The ...more
Jan 13, 2020 rated it liked it
I felt like this was a bit preachy. I get that they are trying to use humor to encourage children to take a bath, brush their teeth, etc., but do you really want to do this because you fear monsters? I felt this was written by a frustrated parent. I didn't like that monsters hide under parents' bed. Isn't that where kids should go for comfort?
I do think kids would like the monster theme.
Shirley Alarie
Oct 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book has a brilliant premise... "the more you know about monsters, the more you will know how to defeat them."

Smarter Than A Monster is filled with clever wit to tackle a significant fear of many children.   Author Brandon Mull takes the reader through everyday situations and explains how to deter monsters. The Monster Survival Guide explains what behaviors deter monsters. These happen to be behaviors parents desire of their children, such as keeping their room clean and taking a bath.

A fan
Nov 22, 2019 rated it liked it
This is a picture book that is intended to sound like an informative book about how to avoid monsters rather than a story with a plot and characters. There are things I liked about it and things I didn’t like.

I liked the cute, colorful, non-scary monsters. I also like the way it teaches kids to do good things by telling them monsters prefer kids who need a bath or haven’t brushed their teeth. It encourages kids not to spend a lot of time in front of the television and to clean their rooms.

I also
Nov 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a great book for kids. I read this book to my class of 2nd graders. They not only loved the story but were enamored with the illustrations! (illustrations by Mike Walton) Brandon Mull, known for the wonderful Fabelehaven middle-grade series has once again written a brilliant children's book that speaks their language. So many kids are afraid of monsters and this book in a cute way tells how to repel those monsters. Some of the things were so smart like staying in your own bed and brushing y ...more
Tressa (Wishful Endings)
Oct 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens, 2019
SMARTER THAN A MONSTER: A SURVIVAL GUIDE is a fun book that prods kids to use healthy habits in their fight against imaginative monsters. Full of colorful illustrations and short passages that any child will relate to and also find quite entertaining. Highly recommended!

Not only was this a fun and quick read for me as an adult, my kids loved it! They even read it multiple times. It's a rather inventive way of teaching children to brush teeth, keep their rooms clean, bathe and shower, etc. My old
Jessica Bronder
Oct 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
People have been afraid of monsters for a long, long time. And they have learned some surprising things about these monsters. We know how where they really hide and what attracts them. This truly is a guide to monsters and how not to get ambushed by them.

This is the cutest book. I love all the illustrations; they really brought the monsters to life. But I really enjoy the message for kids. You can’t attract monsters if you stay in your own bed or brush your teeth and clean your room. But I have
Sep 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is awesome! If you don't believe me, you can ask my 5 year old who has insisted that I read this book every night for the past 3 weeks. Yep, 3 weeks guys, that is a long time and he still loves it! That is also a testament to the parent reading the book because normally after week 2 I hide the book and suggest another one for our bedtime reading. The illustrations in this book are so colorful and fun. My little guy loves the small details and hidden monsters. I like the message about m ...more
Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews
I loved this book!  It is written to engage children in combatting their fears of monsters but at the same time encouraging them to be clean and tidy to keep the monsters away.  Genius!

This would be a great book to read together at bedtime and makes me wish I had a little one to read to at night.

I love the illustrations.  The monsters and other characters are very colorful and make for a rich feeling book.

We give this book 5 paws up and recommend it to anyone with a young child especially if the
Oct 25, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens
Fairly adoreable tongue-in-cheek book about how to beat monsters. Illustrations are vibrant, colorful, clear, and delightful. Book attempts to promote good habits in kids. I wondered though about very literal-minded kids reading this and being upset about some of the things they are told not to do. Things such as don't watch TV or play video games, and don't go to your parents' room when you have a nightmare.
Gabrielle Stoller
So many people will love this book. Especially the tongue in cheek nature of getting kids to do the right thing (brush their teeth, take a bath, etc.) And kids also love monster themed storytimes.

Now I would use it in a storytime. But here is the thing: I think Brandon Mull needs to stick to chapter books. There was something about the writing style that was not my favorite.

So in order to be authentic.....would I really use it?
Sep 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Wonderful, colorful illustrations on this "survival" guide for dealing with monsters. I learned monsters dislike the smell of soap, like to hide in messy rooms, and can pounce on you while watching too much television. A clever premise that teaches kids the basics of good hygiene, staying active, and keeping their rooms clean.
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is pure genius. Every child needs to read this book. It will cure any monster problems at home. Not only that, but it will help with other issues like taking baths, cleaning rooms, and other things that will help children understand how to be smarter than a monster. I would say it's this year's book to read.
Oct 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Clever way to slip in helpful hints on hygiene and cleaning up your spaces. The narrator shares that monsters don't like obvious hiding places, clutter, dirt, dust, messy spaces, etc. The guide offers tips for keeping monsters away.
The illustrations are filled with color and humor. Check out the monster expressions on each page.
Mortisha Cassavetes
Jan 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2020
I won a copy of this book on GoodReads and just loved it. The illustrations are bright and colorful and the story is definitely one that will help parents of young kids. The story goes into how to keep monsters away by developing good hygiene and keeping your room neat and tidy. I highly recommend this book to kids of all ages.
May 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The whole family loves this book! I highly recommend it to children and parents alike. I laughed out loud at the helpful suggestions of ways to avoid monsters including staying in your own bed, taking regular baths, brushing your teeth and keeping your room clean. The illustrations are delightful as well. Another favorite from Brandon Mull.
This book was hilarious. All the ways to keep a monster a bay. Great for a lapsit or a school age program on monsters. Parents will love that it convinces kids to brush their teeth ( monsters like stinky breath) or stay in their own bed ( monsters trick you by hiding under parents bed) Loved it!
Nov 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is adorable and the illustrations are so bright and cheerful. The book is funny and is bound to delight children. I looked at it in a bookstore and am probably going to have to buy it at some point for my kids.
Nov 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Eight year old grandson loved this book, had me read it twice. "Did a mother write this book", when read out the author's name as a male again was asked "Are you sure a mother didn't write this book".
Cherie Nef
Mar 24, 2020 rated it liked it
I did not love this book which is strange for a Brandon Mull book. The part about monsters hiding under parent's bed seems like it would be quite frightening for young children. I didn't care for the part about clowns, either. Okay for the school library, but I won't be recommending it.
Sep 30, 2020 rated it did not like it
Like others mentioned, very preachy. I'm not sure this would fly with kids: I think they'd either see through it as a thinly veiled attempt to get them to behave, or if they're younger, get scared (also like others have mentioned). Could have been an awesome concept, but didn't stick the landing.
Jamille Parks
Aug 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
This is cute. It teaches kids good habits to keep the monsters away.
Syntha Green
Sep 25, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
As an adult, I found this humorous, but I don't know if kids will.
Colorado Buck
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-picture
If you want your kid to not be afraid of monsters and to do what they are supposed to do this book is for them. Very cute read.
L.M. Ransom
Super cute book! And Mr. Mull mentions a carousel? How awesome is that? Love it.
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Brandon Mull resides in a happy little valley near the mouth of a canyon with his wife and three children. He spent two years living in the Atacama Desert of Northern Chile where he learned Spanish and juggling. He once won a pudding eating contest in the park behind his grandma’s house, earning a gold medal. Brandon is the author of the New York Times bestselling Fablehaven series and The Candy S ...more

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