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Book Review: How to Make Friends and Monsters

July 23, 2013

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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!