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Chester's Masterpiece (Chester)
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Chester's Masterpiece


4.08  ·  Rating details ·  1,138 ratings  ·  139 reviews
Chester's finally ready to write his own masterpiece --- he just needs to get pesky writer-illustrator Mélanie Watt out of the way.

Chester's solo attempts at storytelling are messy, to say the least, but he's determined to go it alone. But where's his story going? After several alternative (but always unhappy) endings, Chester is confronted by a problem he never bargained
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by Kids Can Press (first published 2010)
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Community Reviews

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August 4 2010

The Offspring and I really enjoy the Chester books which are lessons in story-telling and book-making and art, as well as amusing picture books. Chester starts out by messing about with the books Melanie Watt is producing, and in this outing he upgrades to stealing her art materials and producing a book all on his own. Watt communicates with him through a series of post-it notes, advising him on how to create his own story, choose his setting, etc.

Library copy.
Tzu-Mainn Chen
Mar 23, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: kid-appropriate
My daughter wanted to contribute a review. I have decided to average her score and mine. She rates it five stars. I rate it NEGATIVE KAJILLION STARS. Holy cow, this book is excruciating to read night after night after night.

I have mixed her comments with mine own below - but! I have not indicated which is which.

+ it's silly and funny and it seems like it goes on forever but it doesn't
- it seems like it goes on forever and i think maybe it does
+ because there are three characters and that is ridi
Jun 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
I already love Scaredy Squirrel, but now I can see I need to go back & read all of the Chester books! This is one of those rare books where all readers need to read the entire copyright page. Too fun!
Steve Holden
Aug 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I own the other Chester books, but not this one! Upon reading through it at the library, and falling in love with the others I own, this is now on top of my "to find" list! The same premise remains here - Chester, a cat, and his owner - the author/illustrator of the series - go back and forth in trying to tell a story. They provide laughs in a silly way. This one, however, includes some teaching of how to go through the writing process and actually make a book. It's not as easy as Chester though ...more
Laura (Book Scrounger)
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: library-books
This was a neat idea for a story (a cat takes over the author's book and tries to write his own stories), but it reads like a giant argument between author and cat, and the different "voices" with text all over the place make it confusing and difficult to read aloud to a child. Maybe some adults and older children would enjoy it, but I found it a bit spastic and maybe trying too hard to be funny.
Sep 25, 2017 added it
Interesting, but busy. Might be a difficult read-aloud.
Feb 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
In this third Chester book, Chester has completely taken over and is writing the book all by himself. He has taken Melanie’s art supplies and her computer mouse. But writing a children’s book isn’t as easy as Chester thinks. He has to come up with original ideas, select a genre, illustrate the book, and then work on a happy ending rather than a gloomy one. Luckily Melanie is right there with helpful criticism along the way, even demonstrating her skills as an artist with just a pencil.

I know th
Apr 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
This is the most clever and darling book I have read in a long time! Chester the cat is starring in his third book, but this time he is writing the book all by himself....with ABSOLUTELY NO help from Melanie Watt! He has hidden her art supplies and computer mouse and is off creating his own story in his own way, even if he has to use ideas from other books, even if he doesn't include other characters, and even if his pen runs out of ink! The pages will make you laugh out loud as you read (via po ...more
Chester the cat, the star of two previous books, Chester and Chester's Back, takes over this time to write his own book. Stealing author Melanie Watt's supplies so that she cannot interfere, Chester illustrates and writes several stories, but cannot seem to find his groove. The clever exchanges between Watt and Chester as they fight for ownership of the book extend onto the copyright page and author's bio. A marvelous story for inspiring young writers and showing the work that goes into creating ...more
Paige Patterson
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Title: Chester’s Masterpiece

Author: Melanie Watt

Illustrator: Melanie Watt

Genre: Non-traditional (postmodern) picture book

Theme(s): Picture books, Writing/Storytelling, Cats,

Opening line/sentence: Chester!!! I need to make this book. Now tell me where all my stuff is this instant!!!

Brief Book Summary: Chester the cat steal’s the author, Melanie’s writing supplies and begins to write his own book. Melanie writes to Chester on sticky notes, and the two go back and forth arguing over Chester’s incor
Jenna Bailin
Nov 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Reading Log
Title: Chester’s Masterpiece
Author: Mélanie Watt
Genre: Non-traditional (postmodern) picture book
Theme(s): How to write a story, becoming an author, cats
Opening line/sentence (type directly from text):
“Dear Readers,
I am thrilled to announce that Mélanie Watt will no longer be writing or illustrating children’s books because of a toothache and some technical difficulties.”

Brief Book Summary (2-3 sentences in your own words):
Chester the cat has stolen the author’s mouse so she cannot
May 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-book, humor, 2018
As an adult reading it, it's hilarious. I love the sassy cat attitude (even through the copyright page!). As a child reading it, it might be a little more effort. The text doesn't follow a normal page placement set-up. It's more like how a graphic novel has text all over the page to work with all the illustrations. Older kids should be able to follow the unusual structure to the pages, but younger readers might be a little more challenged.

As a storytime book... not really. It's tons of fun, but
Kaitlyn Craig
Jan 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: science
I did not really care for this book, there was just too much going on and it was hard to know what to read first on each page. There were two different conversations going on throughout and it was confusing to me. I would not want to use this as a read-aloud since I did not really care for it.
Sarah Westgate
Oct 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Genre: Fiction
This book could be used in a Kindergarten class and up. One unique feature of this book is Chester is writing the story and having a conversation with the author through sticky notes. This book would be great to use when teaching children about writing great stories with details!
Erica Flory
Dec 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Mar 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Oh Chester... you hid Melanie's supplies and wrote your own book? Be sure to read the flyleaves too!
Eryn O'Shaughnessy
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My daughters rating. I would give it a soft 4
Kristin Nelson
Dec 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
This would be fun to use in lower elementary grades to help kids understand genre, setting, and other parts of a story and book. Not sure if I have ever read Chester. Guess I should.
Alex Swink
“Chester’s Masterpiece” is a fun book that breaks the fourth wall in literature. One of the characters interacts with the author, which is very entertaining for the reader.
Tessa VanderStel
Jan 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a hilarious read! Children will laugh along as reading this book written by both Chester and Melanie Watt. Even the front and end pages have Chester's writing all over them. This would be a great book to teach children about how to write a story with a good plot (something that Chester struggles with!)
Jul 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Elisa Samano
Sep 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Chester's Masterpiece is about a cat who is ready to write his own story masterpiece. He tries to write about humor, action, adventure, but can't seem to get a right plot.

This story is self-referential as the characters are self-aware of the story. The story also addresses the reader. At the beginning of the story, Chester explains how the author has a toothache, and he will be writing the story himself. There is also a disruption of the story within. The cat and the mouse go on and on about ho
Sep 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is a book about a cat named Chester; he feels that he is ready to create his own masterpiece. He feels that in order to complete his masterpiece he needs to get the author Melanie Watt out of the way. He has hidden her art supplies and the mouse to her computer. Chester and Melanie go back and forth in the story him writing in red and Melanie writing on post it notes. He will try to write the story and she interrupts him because she wants her stuff back. The ending of the book was funny and ...more
Sep 19, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-to-the-kids
This is a fun book that breaks the fourth wall. My kids enjoyed the hi-jinks of the cat who took over the book.
Jennifer Rayment
Feb 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: signed-by-author
Jake's Review: This book made me laugh. I really liked how the mouse and Melanie argue with Chester all the time. It made me laugh when Chester ran out of ink and couldn't communicate anymore. Chester looked funny when he was dressed as a mime. I liked the last page where you find out that Chester has dumped all of Melanie's stuff in the kitty litter.

Mom's Review: I'm prejudiced with this one, since I absolutely adore Melanie Watt and all of her work. It would have to be pretty crappy for me not
Breanna Borunda
Oct 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
It looks like Chester finally got his way this time around, and takes over Melanie's story to write his own. Melanie might not be too happy about it, but she has no supplies since Chester took it all! Although his plan worked this time, he's still having trouble deciding what he's going to write about whether he likes it or not. Melanie and mouse try to give him some tips along the way, but you never know what Chester has up his sleeve.
Author Melanie Watt, did a great job writing this post moder
Alyshia Riggs
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Chester's Masterpiece is a very humorous book. The books plot is that Chester is trying to overcome writers block and come up with a story. Throughout this he stole Melanie's supplies and refuses to give them back. Chester begins to write several small stories throughout the book, however, the stories endings are always bad. This causes Melanie and Chester to have dialogue between them, and Melanie is trying to help him create a better story in a humorous brother sister like way. This book is a ...more
Nov 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: post-modern
Chester's Masterpiece by Melanie Watt is a delightful and humorous battle of wills for control over the story. Chester has decided that he is going to replace Melanie in her picture book making endeavors. By cleverly stealing some important materials, Chester has hijacked the book and a very red marker. But this smart kitty is not going to get away with it; Melanie, with her well-timed sticky notes, is going to try to resume control. Between writer's block and through some not-so-great plots, Ch ...more
Rebecca Sherod
Nov 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
This funny and unusual story introduces the author as a cat, Chester, who has hidden all of Melanie Watt’s writing supplies and has decided to write a story himself with a giant red marker. Throughout the story, Chester writes about different topics and different things happening. For instance he switches from writing about a supercat and how he saved the world from an evil mouse, to a cat and mouse pirate team that find lost treasure. While all of these stories are going on, Melanie is interact ...more
This book was such a engaging way for a book to be written. The cat has taken the authors art supplies and is creating a book. While the author is using a pencil and post-its to communicate with the cat. The cat has no idea how to write a book but really wants to write one and illustrate it. The cover page even says this book was written by Chester and not Melanie(the actual author). It starts reading from the very first page with all the publishing information. I think that is a neat and unique ...more
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It was in a design class taught by Michèle Lemieux at the University of Quebec in Montreal that author and illustrator Mélanie Watt created her first picture book, Leon the Chameleon, which was later published by Kids Can Press. Watt went on to create several more books, including the Learning with Animals collection and Augustine, which was named an ALA Notable Children's Book. Watt has also illu ...more

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Chester (3 books)
  • Chester (Chester)
  • Chester's Back! (Chester)