Early Chapter Book Review: Day of the Night Crawlers


Day of the Night Crawlers by Troy Cummings

Age Range: 6 – 8 years

Grade Level: 1 – 3

Series: The Notebook of Doom (Book 2)

Paperback: 96 pages

Publisher: Scholastic Inc. (August 27, 2013)

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (thank you!)

Rating: 4 of 5 stars

About the Book:

Monsters have never been this much fun!

This series is part of
Scholastic’s early chapter book line called Branches, which is aimed at
newly independent readers. With easy-to-read text, high-interest
content, fast-paced plots, and illustrations on every page, these books
will boost reading confidence and stamina. Branches books help readers

In this second book in the series, Alexander and his new
friend, Rip, try to learn more about the monster-filled notebook. They
follow clues left by strange worms called night crawlers. It turns out
new monsters are in town–giant fish monsters called tunnel fish–and
even a fish-kabob monster! This humorous, action-packed book has fun
black-and-white illustrations on every page.

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About the Author/Illustrator:

Troy Cummings has been drawing since he was a little kid. His
illustrations have appeared in newspapers and magazines, on web sites,
on frozen-fish-stick packages, and in hospital waiting rooms. He lives
in Indiana with his cat and  family.

He has published two picture books so far: THE EENSY WEENSY SPIDER
FREAKS OUT! and MORE BEARS! His third picture book, GIDDY-UP, DADDY! is
due out in April 2013. THE NOTEBOOK OF DOOM is his first early chapter
book series. He lives in Indiana with his cat and family.


My Thoughts:

I love it when an early chapter book can make both my five year old and
myself smile. In this second installment of the Notebook of Doom,
Alexander and Rip team up with their classmate Nikki to take down the
latest invading monster. This book is a little shorter than the first
one, but it still has all of the fun.

My daughter loves this series. She keeps asking when we can read the
next book. This series is perfect for kids her age (five) and a little older.
The story and text are simple enough that it’s easy to understand, yet
the plot is exciting and there is a lot going on.  The black and white
illustrations on every page help kids visualize what’s happening while
keeping their interest.

This is a really great series for children gaining confidence in their
reading and ready to try something longer than the beginning reading

The one complaint I have is that the ending wrapped up too quickly and
simply. It didn’t really require any skill or action on the part of the
protagonist, but rather resolved out of mostly dumb luck. I would have
liked to see Alexander and his friends take some sort of decisive

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  • Reply
    Adriana Garcia
    August 27, 2013 at 12:32 am

    Hmmm… I don't understand what the author was thinking if the protagonist was able to get out of their situation that easily. Even little kids like to see their characters beat the odds – no dumb luck required but by using their own skills. I hope you and your daughter enjoy the next book in the series (:

    • Reply
      August 27, 2013 at 2:00 am

      Well, it's not like nothing happened. I was just disappointed in the way it played out. Even though there was a lot of action, I didn't feel like the characters actually solved their problem. They just got lucky.

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