By GLENN TOLLE
It’s getting close to summer and, for me, that brings back memories of being at my cottage where, as a kid, my mom would read me books for hours on end on our deck. I would look at the lake while my mom would read but I wouldn’t REALLY look at the lake. Truth be told my eyes were simply using the landscape as a canvas for my imagination. Most of the books my mom read to me were chapter books with few pictures. But there were exceptions… like Minnie and Moo.
In this week’s edition of FRIGHTS FOR TYKES I’ll be recommending MINNIE AND MOO MEET FRANKENSWINE written and illustrated by Denys Cazet, published by HarperCollins in 2001.
Moo is scared by something moving in the darkness of a stormy night. Unlike most cows, Minnie and Moo do not sleep in a barn or in a pasture, for that matter, but in beds under an “old oak tree” on a hill. This hill overlooks the farm house, the barn, and the great expensive black of night. Moo isn’t the only one scared this night; the other farm animals are too and think that a monster is on the loose.
Said monster comes in many forms: a large, horned, fanged, blue nosed, green bodied beast or a pig with an electric glow… soon, the Rooster dubs the creature “Frankenswine.” But are these monsters truly terrorizing the farm, or is it the storm and the overactive imaginations of terrified farm animals? One thing’s for sure, this book ends its first and last chapter with a scream and, unlike the monsters in this book, that persistent scream… is never explained.
When I was a kid I thought this Minnie and Moo book was one of the best, and I still think it tops the series. Minnie and Moo breathe a fresh ( or is that “cow fresh”) air into the “dark and stormy night” set up, adding unique levity, skepticism and a sinister unanswered question, to this tried-and-true trope.
You can buy your very own edition of MINNIE AND MOO MEET FRANKENSWINE on AMAZON for $6.59, plus free shipping, used, in “Acceptable” condition.
All people, at one point or another, have thought they saw a monster between the dark of night and the light of lightning. Minnie and Moo have too and they’re waiting to tell their adventure to you!