Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Past the Edge of Nowhere

Sometimes "nowhere" is somewhere. In One Monster After Another (1974, Mercer Mayer) "Nowhere" is a mysterious other-world that borders our own, where monsters live.

You'll have no trouble finding it...just follow the signs. When you've stepped across the "Edge of Nowhere", you're there.

The story told here is not scary at all...its all about whimsy and humor. But the illustrations paint such a rich, detailed world...a world of hidden, creeping things that might reveal themselves if you only stared at the pictures long enough.

A Letter-Eating Bombanat soars over the Blue Ocean of Bubbly Goo...a dark sea teeming with threatening things.

Like these hostile fish...

And this enormous Grumley, whose crab-like claws each have their own set of eyes!

But even he is outsized by the hovering, Wild n' Windy Typhoonigator, who proceeds to suck up the entire sea and everything in it.

Less monstrous is this Stamp-Collecting Trollusk...

The Paper-Munching Yalapappus...

And this Grithix seems friendly enough, unless you're a Bombanat. He collects them.

I used to own the original oversized hardcover of One Monster After Another, which is now fetching quite the price on the collector's market...one of a handful of treasures from my childhood that got away. But I recently acquired the 1993 softcover reprint pictured here, and was finally able to explore this fantastic world all over again. It received another reprint in 2001, but even that has since gone out of print and is going for outrageous prices. Good luck finding a reasonably priced copy, readers.


Rot said...

FANTASTIC blog. Just discovered it.

Truly wonderful.

Jon said...

This post gave me an instant wave of sweet nostalgia. I had totally forgotten about this book until seeing your blog. Great stuff. I'll have to try and find a copy myself now.

Terrific blog.

Brother Bill said...

Rot, thanks for the kind words and the mention at http://pumpkinrot.blogspot.com/

which I just added to my favorites.

Brother Bill said...


I love that surreal, time-bending moment when you rediscover something that had been totally forgotten. Glad you enjoyed the post, and good luck finding your own copy.

Anonymous said...

My parents gave me this book after a trip to the US in the early 70s! (One monster after another.) I´m not surprised to read that its a collectible now, but I´ll never part from it. I love your blog b t w.