Tickle Monster Review
Written by: Josie Bissett
Illustrated by: Kevan J. Atteberry
Age Range: 3 and up
Publisher: Compendium Publishing
“Tickle Monster” is about an alien monster who lands on earth with the goal of tickling things. The tickle monster finds a cute animal to tickle and begins tickling its toes.
After tickling the aforementioned animal from its head to its toes, the the story ends with the tickle monster leaving to go take a nap back on planet Tickle.
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What Worked For Me
The illustrations are colorful and definitely command your attention. The book follows a pattern of outdoor scenery for a two page spread, then chooses a different color as the background of the next two page spread. This pattern keeps your attention throughout the story.
What Didn't Work For Me
I want to be transparent here. I didn’t enjoy this book very much. You may disagree with me about why I didn’t enjoy it. Your opinion and mine may not always be the same, and that’s okay! Here we go.
Consent. Wow. This book misses the mark on this. So much. You absolutely cannot go around touching and tickling strangers because you feel like it. This book is hard to read because of this fact. The animal that’s being tickled looks like it’s enjoying it, but if you’re going to write a book that involves touching things then consent has to be part of that narrative. Plain and simple.
The story just isn’t all that interesting. On top of that, the entire time you’re reading this book you get this uncomfortable feeling every time the tickle monster starts tickling the… well, I honestly don’t really know what the animal that’s be tickled is supposed to be. It’s some sort of cross between a rabbit and a desert lynx... maybe? Your guess is as good as mine. If you happen to know what animal it’s supposed to be, let me know.
Here’s the metric I use: When you’re a parent and your child asks to read this book 3 or more days in a row, how likely are you to want to jump head first through a wall?
I really don’t like reading this book to my kids. We don’t read it as a family because of the message it sends regarding consent. This book doesn’t qualify for re-reading with my kids.
As I said before, this book really doesn’t work for me. The issue about touching people without consent doesn’t leave your mind as you read the book. The story tries to be cute, but what it really does is send the wrong message. There are a lot of great picture books out there that I would recommend before this one.
But hey! Maybe you’ll think my opinion is wrong here. Feel free to give it a read if you think you might enjoy it. Let me know what you think of it!
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