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The Picture Book Buzz

BUB - Perfect Picture Book Friday #PPBF

Ever wish you could just disappear?

Either as a child, as an adult, or both? That no one would miss you or that maybe this action would change their behavior? No one who knows me would consider me an introvert (and I was the first born), but I've definitely had times - parents fighting, a teacher making an example of me in class, and an awkward social engagement.

In a deceptively simple and touching book, a sensitive, middle-child monster, Bub, deals with an exceptionally boisterous family day.


Author/Illustrator: Elizabeth Rose Stanton

Publisher: Simon & Schuster (2018)

Ages: 4-8



Family, siblings, middle-child, and monsters

Synopsis (by Simon & Schuster):

A little monster, caught in the middle of a boisterous monster family, tries to find a way to be seen in this whimsically sweet and quirky picture book from the author of Henny and Peddles. For Bub, it’s not easy being the middle child in his little monster family—especially such a noisy and busy one: Maw and Paw can be very loud, his big sister Bernice is good at everything, and everyone has to pay attention to The Baby. No one has time for Bub. But the day comes when Bub decides to take charge, and suddenly things change in a very magical little monster way! What happens next keeps his family guessing, until Bub sees that it might not be so bad being in the middle, after all.

Opening Lines:

This is Bub.

His real name is Bob.

On the first day of school Bob didn't close the top of his O.

From then on, he was Bub.

Why I like this book:

Being a middle child can be hard. Heck being any order child can be hard. Life is just hard, sometimes.

illustrations copyright Elizabeth Rose Stanton 2018

Bub feels overlooked and neglected. Overshadowed by his older sister's accomplishments and his baby sister's cuteness. And lost behind his loving, but boisterous, parents.

During an exceptionally loud, annoying day, Bub fades away, through the gutter between pages. At the end of the day, his family finally misses him. When their search fails to locate Bub, they leave him a note. Which returns, as a paper airplane, with a list of changes he desires (needs). Happily, everything goes "back to the way it was . . . only better."

Illustrated with the flair we've come to expect from Elizabeth Rose Stanton, the soft, watercolor images of a green monster in baggy, blue overalls (and his entire family) are endearing. Peppered throughout the story are pictures of her other picture book characters (Henny & Peddles), and a few other monsters, who interact with the story.

This is a great book for introverts, middle children, and anyone that feels invisible to their family or friends, or just a bit overwhelmed.


- read a book, draw, or do a puzzle with someone shy or withdrawn;

- check out these activities for siblings (to promote less fights & feelings of being left out); or

- write notes and exchange them by making them into paper airplanes.

This post is part of a series by authors and KidLit bloggers called Perfect Picture Book Fridays. For more picture book suggestions see Susanna Leonard Hill's Perfect Picture Books.

Maria Marshall

 Photograph © A. Marshall

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