ABC Monstrosity Literally Explodes with Creativity (Review)

by | Jul 6, 2020

ABC Monstrosity is an alternative alphabet book from Alice at Naptime creator Shea Proulx published via Renegade Arts Entertainment and is AVAILABLE NOW to purchase right HERE. This is my review:

ABC Monstrosity is both quirky and hilarious, with creepy creations sure to delight children and adults alike. As each new letter is introduced with a drawing of a familiar object or animal, the previous ones are continuously combined to create bizarre monstrosities. The detailed drawings are beautifully hand coloured by Shea. ABC Monstrosity includes a zany glossary featuring fascinating scientific facts augmented with humour. The detailed monstrosities have nonsense definitions, but the science behind how we might define more ordinary-seeming animals and objects in our lives is surprisingly complex.

Shea’s second book follows in the tradition of alternative alphabet books like Neil Gaiman’s The Dangerous Alphabet, Edward Gorey’s The Gashlycrumb Tinies, and Anamalia by Graeme Base. Beautifully hand drawn illustrations bring these ‘monstrous’ creations to life.

A great gift for new readers, families, as well as language and art lovers interested in quirky, delightful items. (synopsis from Renegade Arts Entertainment)

The year’s best educational book has arrived in the glorious mutated form of ABC Monstrosity – a journey through the alphabet in a way that none of us had dared to even consider before now. Shea Proulx’s latest and greatest book is one of the coolest conceptual offerings I’ve seen in a very long time. The simple task of executing an ABC book has been done to death, but noone has dared to do what Proulx has, until now. In ABC Monstrosity, each letter of the alphabet is presented with some beautiful art but when we go down the list, each new letter (and subject example), begins to blend together in some wonderfully haunting image that would make any body horror fan lose their mind. A is indeed for Apple and B is most certainly for Banana, but did you know that B is also for “Banapple” – which is sort of this eerily erotic? and sweaty mutant hybrid fruit which Proulx has created by combining both an Apple and Banana into something new and unique.

Then wait until you add C is for Cow into the mix and you wind up with “Cabannapow” – which yes, combines both the apple and banana, with a cow. If you were extra curious to learn more about the monstrosities that lurk throughout this incredible book, Proulx has included a glossary with definitions to each and every single freakshow that she has masterfully presented here. Did you know that the elusive Cabannapow is “a rare semiaquatic ground dwelling monotreme that only inhabits mountainous areas bordering ancient banana plantations”? — (her words exactly from the glossary).

ABC Monstrosity is an insanely fun read and not only did all three of my kids love the book, but they’ve pretty much stolen it from my shelf and have been going through it nonstop. If you’ve read “Alice at Naptime”, which is Proulx’ previous effort and one of the best and most heart warming pieces of art to come from the Alberta indie creator’s scene, then you know how masterful Shea is with her visuals. There’s an image of just a plain old “Yak” – in this book that is so detailed and gorgeous that I would read a book where she just paints various wild animals, but then she takes that sexy standard Yak and mashes it with an X-Ray Machine (and whatever else happens along the way). The visuals are trippy as Hell and make for some of the most vibrantly disturbing painted images I’ve ever seen. The creativity of ABC Monstrosity literally explodes from the pages. Get it – read it with your kids and be prepared to blow the entire fam’s mind.

Rating: 5/5

ABC Monstrosity