Book Reviews

Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods

A revised version of a 1910 textbook on mythological creatures native to the North American lands, follow along with the narrator as he describes his explorations of North American cryptozoology in Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods: 20 Chilling Tales from the Wilderness.

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A children’s book with a bite, Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods debuted last year and has quickly made it’s way to many summer reading lists. It is a quick read for an adult, and challenging for an early reader. Divided into several short entries the book reads like your grandfather is telling you these worrisome tails at your bedside. The illustrations by Tom Mead invoke a mix of Disneyana and Tim Burton, although some of them are a bit disturbing, they are all well drawn, instantly taking you to the land of the Hugag, deep in the pine woods of the area surrounding Lake Huron. A few images have a glow-in-the-dark overlay, making this a great before bedtime read.

Fans of Lemony Snicket’s tone will love Lumberwoods. We follow the sarcastic narrator as he retells the horrors of the adorable Wapaloosie, the fear of seeing the Whirling Whimpus, the absolute murderous horror of the Acropelter. The creatures go way beyond tales of Bigfoot and Champ. These creatures are truly intriguing, if not frightening.

This book is best read along with younger children, and allows for a great discussion on fact and fiction for younger readers. While not at Aesop’s level, Johnson tries to place a few morals among Lumberwoods, and it always turns out right in the end. The layout of the book maybe difficult for some early readers. The font size varies, sometimes the font face changes as well. There are glorious illustrations sprinkled throughout the stories, allowing for some fun, hunting for the glow in the dark overlays.

Maybe you’ll discover a monster lurking in your own area?


Rating: ★★☆☆☆

IMG_4002Author: Hal Johnson

Illustrator: Tom Mead

Publisher: Workman Publishing Co., Inc

Publish Date: 2015

Page Count: 167, including author’s notes.




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