Check out Adam Rex’s Web site or blog and you’ll see he is an artist with a vivid imagination and a writer with a sense of the outrageous. You’ll also learn that he loves pie, but not flying beetles, studied illustration at the University of Arizona, created art for the Dungeons & Dragons game, sculpts many of his book characters, and currently lives in Philadelphia with his physicist wife, Marie, and two cats as “big as buffalos.”
His first children's book was illustrating The Dirty Cowboy written by Amy Timberlake published in 2003, followed by several in the Lucy Rose series by Katy Kelly. In just a few short years, he has written and illustrated almost a dozen works, including his recent poetry collection, Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich, a New York Times bestseller. School Library Journal said "The book is fresh, creative, and funny, with just enough gory detail to cause a few gasps. Kids will eat it up." And Kirkus gave it a *starred review*, saying "Readers will relish every gross and hilarious entry in this monstrous menu of misadventures. Here’s a read-aloud candidate sure to elicit loud screams--but not of fright."
Here is just a sample (about my favorite character, the Phantom, who is plagued with a variety of song tunes that he just can’t get out of his head):
If the Phantom of the Opera Can’t Get “Pop Goes the Weasel” Out of His Head HE’S GOING TO FREAK OUT
by Adam Rex
All around the Opera House
the Phantom throws a tantrum.
The song won’t die—he doesn’t know why.
“Stop!” goes the phantom.
From: Rex, Adam. 2005. Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich. San Diego: Harcourt, p. 21
[And of course, you have to SING this poem, too!]
For more “monster” poems, look for:
Ciardi, John. 1966. The Monster Den; or, Look What Happened at My House --and to It.
Philadelphia: Lippincott. 1991. Reprinted: Honesdale, PA: Wordsong.
Florian, Douglas. 1993. Monster Motel: Poems and Paintings. San Diego, CA: Harcourt Brace.
Hopkins, Lee Bennett. 1977. Monsters, Ghoulies, and Creepy Creatures: Fantastic Stories and Poems. New York: Albert Whitman.
McNaughton, Colin. 2002. Making Friends with Frankenstein. Cambridge: Candlewick.
Prelutsky, Jack. 2001. Awful Ogre’s Awful Day. New York: Greenwillow.
Prelutsky, Jack. 1999. The Gargoyle on the Roof. New York: Greenwillow.
Prelutsky, Jack. 2000. Monday’s Troll. New York: HarperTrophy.
Prelutsky, Jack. 1976. Nightmares: Poems to Trouble Your Sleep. New York: Greenwillow. Reprinted, New York: Mulberry Books, 1993.
Sierra, Judy. 2005. Gruesome Guide to World Monsters. Cambridge: Candlewick.
Sierra, Judy. 2001. Monster Goose. San Diego: Gulliver Books.
Sierra, Judy. 2006. Thelonius Monster's Sky-High Fly-Pie. New York: Knopf.
Singer, Marilyn. 2004. Creature Carnival. New York: Hyperion.
Singer, Marilyn. 2001. Monster Museum. New York: Hyperion.
Who knew there were so many poetry books about monsters?
Picture credit: www.aintitcool.com