The beast likes to garden. And drink tea. And read. And bake cakes. But he lives by himself, and he is lonely. So one day he decides to go on a journey to try to discover whether there are any other beasts in the world.
There’s something endearing about the beast. You know from the start that he isn’t a scary monster. How can he be with such a beautiful garden, or wearing his little chef’s hat? And so we’re immediately on his side, following his journey with interest as he scales mountains, steep cliffs and dark caves. When he finally makes it to the city the people are initially scared but they soon realise he is friendly and they invite him to live in their park, appear on their chat shows, and interview him in the press in a bid to find more beasts. When none appear he sadly makes his way back home (and we see this return journey as a reverse of the first journey, much as we do with We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury) but of course once he arrives he discovers lots of beasts, who had all been lonely too and come to find him.
Read the rest of my review for The Bookbag.