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Book Review: How to Make Friends and Monsters

Jul 23, 2013

Howard's new friend may be a real live monster, but he's the best friend any kid could ever have. What could go wrong? Find out in Kidzworld's book review of How to Make Friends and Monsters by Ron Bates.

The Play Date

Science-obsessed middle schooler Howard Boward has always had trouble making friends. But it's never been a problem until Howard's mom sets him up on a play date with his creepy and annoying neighbor, Reynolds Pipkin. So Howard takes matters into his own hands.

Franklin Stine

He'd love to be friends with the popular kids known as the Ups - the very same kids who occasionally stuff him in lockers, give him wedgies and call him names like How-Lame (clearly he needs to sort out his priorities!) But instead he does the next best thing: he makes his own friend. From scratch. Using the DNA of various animals, hair from a pretty nerd at school and wonder putty. The result? A monstrous-looking creature who Howard names Franklin Stine.

Popularity Isn't Worth It

After downloading his FaceSpace page to Franklin's knowledge bank, Howard brings his monstrous pal to school disguised as a Canadian exchange student. Franklin's loyalty to Howard and his talent on the football field not only makes Franklin popular, but gives Howard a sneak peak of middle school fame. Soon, the popularity goes to Howard's head and he crosses over to the dark side, forgetting who his true friends are. Will Howard realize his mistake before his friendship with Franklin is broken beyond repair? And when the Ups decide they want monsters of their own, will Howard have the courage to refuse them?

The Bottom Line

How to Make Friends and Monsters by Ron Bates is the perfect mix of quick wit, a funny topic and real life issues that kids face in middle school. After all, what middle schooler wouldn't want their own monster best friend? With humor on nearly every page, this book delivers. Fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Dork Diaries and Percy Jackson and the Olympians will love this book!

 

Have Your Say

Will you read How to Make Friends and Monsters by Ron Bates? Tell us in our comment section below!

 

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Comments

not_morgan

not_morgan wrote:

cool
commented: Sat Nov 30, 2013

MikuFanXD

MikuFanXD wrote:

Cool
commented: Fri Nov 15, 2013

InfinityAndBeyondxP
Sounds good
commented: Wed Nov 13, 2013

there are 33 more comments

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Teh_Skittlez
Teh_Skittlez posted in Debating:
"AlphaT" wrote: "Teh_Skittlez" wrote: "AlphaT" wrote: "Teh_Skittlez" wrote: "Vampire Poison" wrote: I'm not exactly sure about this one, I do feel like we should have the death penalty, and then again, I think it's cruel. I believe that it depends on the kind of person and what their crime is. I would feel a lot safer if a person who was a serial killer wasn't around anymore. Again, the Anders Breivik case is a great example of a country treating a mass murderer like a human being rather than a monster (after all, we are a little bit old to be believing in monsters).  So...after reading up on him, I'm very surprised.  He was the Taliban's Taliban.  But he's twisted. He should not of been deemed sane. He should be spending the rest of his days in Solitary Confinement.  Would locking this man in a small space and letting his mind corrode even further really service anyone? Would you or I actually be better off? Do you think the victims' families will be safer at night knowing we've crushed the psyche of a murderer?  Being in prison is good enough, and he'll stay in prison as long as he's a threat, I see no reason that we need to torture him (and that is exactly what indefinite solitary confinement is), other than to satisfy our primal desires. This is why I consider this such a progressive decision. Treating even mass murderers like human beings who still have potential value is progress.  Crushing his psyche is more humane then killing the man. And at this point, he's not going to be much good to society.  Not every psychopathic murderer can come back to be a good citizen. Should he get a shrink? Of course. But if he's deemed "broken beyond repair" I don't see why we should let him be among others, so that he can either be martyr'd for his beliefs in jail or kill a Muslim who is in the prison, or spread his message to to others.  The compromise is that we need to have a volley of psychological tests to determine if they could be fixed (And yes, i know it's not that simple...but its better then letting EVERY SINGLE PSYCHOPATH in a regular prison) and use those tests to place them either in a regular prison, or have a makeshift Arkham Asylum, or solitary confinement.  I think you're confusing high-security and solitary confinement. There is absolutely no reason to keep anybody in solitary confinement indefinitely. We do not need to kill him, or crush his psyche, we have other options. IF he is still deemed unsafe, they can deal with him as they see fit. Obviously if he presents an active danger to other inmates, he should be kept away, but I seriously question the idea that we should preemptively punish him for things he hasn't actually done yet. I don't disagree that it's a case-by-case basis, obviously not every murderer can be reintegrated into society, but if there's even one, don't you think we should give him that opportunity? I think we should start by assuming that every one can be rehabilitated (which obviously won't happen), and then narrow it down from there, not the other way around. Prison is not about making people uncomfortable, it should be about keeping society safe, and about reintegrating violent criminals into a safe society. 
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Fenmore
Fenmore posted in Say Anything:
potato
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WizardMorgan
COOKIES  :)
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AlphaT
AlphaT posted in Say Anything:
Store bought posters, be swaggin in dat room yo.
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