Are you afraid of monsters? Common sense tells us that we should be if they were real, but luckily, they aren’t! Because of this, we can enjoy stories about these fictional creatures, even if they make our hearts stop at times. Many great children’s authors have tales about monsters, and we’ve taken the time to pick out some of our favorite characters from these stories.
Below are a few of the stories that inspired my children’s tale of a group of friends overcoming a mini-zombie apocalypse. Mommy Zombie Apocalypse by DM Burdett
By Maurice Sendack
Technically, this is a group of monsters rather than a single character. Still, the Wild Things are a fun-loving outfit that take a young boy, Max, under their wing after he mysteriously ends up in their magical habitat. We love these monsters because they started as scary beasts but eventually learned to love Max and treat him as a friend. Where the Wild Things Are has some of the most unique illustrations of any children’s book, and the monsters are a major part of that.
By Michael Rex
If you grew up reading Goodnight Moon, you’ll adore this hilarious parody. The goon runs rampant across the black lagoon, causing mischief and making for a wild night for all of the monsters. This is an energizing monster parody that can be enjoyed by lifelong fans of the original book, and parents and children will be laughing throughout the night as the Goon endears himself to them.
By Dr Seuss
Dr. Seuss has plenty of whacky characters in his repertoire, but the Grinch is our favorite of the antagonists. A grumpy green jerk, the Grinch makes plans to ruin Christmas for all of the residents of Whoville. After many foibles, mistakes, and hilarious embarrassments, the Grinch has a change of heart and becomes less of a scary character.
By Deborah Howe and James Howe
Based on the much scarier Dracula, Bunnicula is a rabbit whose reign of terror is based on him sucking the juices out of vegetables. This hilarious series of books follows Bunnicula and his family as he wreaks havoc on all the veggies in the land, terrifying cat and dog who think he is, in fact, a vampire.
By William Steig
You may know him from the movies, but this famous ogre actually first appeared in a book of his own. It tells the same tale as the original film, but with some differences throughout the course of the story. In the big, Shrek is still a goofy, lovable ogre with a heart of gold.
By Julia Donaldson
The Gruffalo was supposed to be a make-believe character made up by a meek little mouse who was just trying to scare off his attackers. When he finds out that the Gruffalo is real, he’s in for a treat! The Gruffalo is a hilarious and heartwarming tale about friendship and courage, and the monster created in the story is not so much scary as he is innocent and hilarious.