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Reviewed by David Korson for Readers' Favorite
The Messiest Monster on Mill Street is an adorable picture book by Sarah Sparks. This colorful story is about a messy little monster named Max. He doesn’t mean to leave a mess in his wake, but he has a hard time helping himself. There’s just always so much to be done! Max is so messy that he has tangled whiskers and holes in his clothes. Things get out of control when the mess starts to grow fuzzy critters, and then some dust bunnies begin to chase the poor little monster. Realizing the predicament he’s gotten himself into, Max fights back against the clutter and dirt. By taking the chores one at a time, he organizes his books, toys, dishes, and art supplies. In the end, Max feels good about what he’s accomplished, although he is still the messiest monster on Mill Street.
As fun to read as it is to look at, Sarah Sparks’s children’s book is perfect for teaching kids the value of keeping their rooms clean. The text rhymes flawlessly and is just silly enough to make out-loud reading enjoyable for both kids and adults. The illustrations strike a nice balance of making sticky, stinky, melty puddles look dirty without being disgusting, and out-of-place hats, crayons, balls, and shoes look cluttered without being too daunting to deal with. With bright images, an appealing rhythm, and a clear message, young readers will be able to relate to and learn a good lesson in tidiness from Max in The Messiest Monster on Mill Street.