Monster Hands

“A thrilling tale of bravery, friendship, and the power of signing”—Kirkus, Starred Review

By Karen Kane and Jonaz McMillan
Illustrated by Dion MBD
Nancy Paulson Books, May 2024

One night just before bedtime…
Milo read a book about
a monster under the bed.
Milo should not have read that book.

Monsters under the bed are scary, but luckily, Milo’s best friend, Mel, knows just what to do—scare the monster more than the monster scares you!

Using shadow puppets on the wall, Milo and Mel make monster hands that roar, chomp, and even laugh to scare the monster away. But uh-oh! What if the monster thinks this is funny? This is NOT funny! Together, Milo and Mel hatch a plan to scare the monster away once and for all. When they’ve at last vanquished the monster, Milo knows there’s one more thing monster hands can do—hug the friend who helped him weather his fears.

Accompanied by warm, luminous art that features rhyming ASL words, this fun and interactive soon-to-be bedtime favorite will not only delight and empower children facing a common bedtime fear, but also provide much needed comfort.



★ “Kane and debut author McMillan build suspense with each of the duo’s attempts to banish the monster, creating a lively collaboration that gives way to a tender gesture between the friends. MBD employs vibrant gradient hues to create looming shadows and dynamically highlight ASL signs.“—Publishers Weekly, starred review

A thrilling tale of bravery, friendship, and the power of signing. Children will eagerly sign or shout along with the most exciting moments. MBD uses color, light, and perspective to create cute yet dramatic illustrations. This is an excellent read for any child fretting about things that go bump in the night, as well as an effortless celebration of ASL.”—Kirkus, starred review

★ “Energetic and dramatic…Clever use of panels and framing make the children’s signing particularly viewer-friendly, and illustrator MBD depicts clearly and expressively ASL’s dynamism… Unlike so many stories that make an issue of the use of ASL, this one naturally and easily shows it as the language these children use—allowing the drama of the story to take center stage.”             —The Horn Book, starred review

—Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

—An Amazon Best Book of the Month—May 2024