The Magnificent Monsters of Cedar Street

By: Lauren Oliver

Illustrator: Ethan Aldridge

Cordelia Clay loves the work she and her father do together: Saving and healing the remarkable creatures around Boston at the end of the nineteenth century. Their home on Cedar Street is full to the brim with dragons, squelches, and diggles, and Cordelia loves every one of them. But their work must be kept secret—others aren’t welcoming to outsiders and immigrants. So what would the people of Boston do to the creatures they label “monsters”?

One morning, Cordelia awakens to discover that her father has disappeared—along with nearly all the monsters. With only a handful of clues and a cryptic note to guide her, Cordelia must set off to find out what happened to her father, with the help of her new friend Gregory, Iggy the farting filch, a baby dragon, and a small zuppy (zombie puppy, that is).

Guide to monsters referenced in the book.

ISBN: 9780062345073

JLG Release: May 2020


Sensitive Areas: Violence: General
Topics: Fantasy and magic , Dragons , Mythical creatures , Friendship , Monsters , Quests , Mystery and detective stories , Missing persons

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Kirkus Reviews*, Booklist, The Horn Book Magazine, School Library Journal*

School Library Journal

Cordelia Clay lives in a world where monsters are real, and it is her father’s job (and hers by proxy) to track down injured monsters to nurse them back to health. Her mother was the author of the definitive guide to natural monster history, but died in her attempt to prove her controversial theory that the two branches of monster evolution stemm Cordelia Clay lives in a world where monsters are real, and it is her father’s job (and hers by proxy) to track down injured monsters to nurse them back to health. Her mother was the author of the definitive guide to natural monster history, but died in her attempt to prove her controversial theory that the two branches of monster evolution stemmed from the same root. When her father disappears it is down to Cordelia and, reluctantly on her part, Gregory, the homeless orphan whose zuppy (zombie puppy) she cured, to rescue him. Filled with a treasure trove of fascinating creatures, this Dickensian world is a treat to explore. It is also incredibly relatable, highlighting the paradox of great wealth among immense poverty and addressing themes of fear-mongering and the need for social change. The book begins with a comprehensive guide to the world’s creatures that readers will turn to again and again. Oliver’s characters leap off the page and readers of all ages will find themselves eagerly rooting them on and clamoring for more as their story ends. Hand this to fans of adventure, magical creatures, and epic quests.

Horn Book

Monsters are real in this version of early-twentieth-century Boston, but most people have no idea that they exist. Cordelia Clay is one of the few acquainted with filches, alicanti, and growrks (a lengthy monster guide opens the novel), and she secretly helps her veterinarian father care for injured ones at their Beacon Hill home. When her father a Monsters are real in this version of early-twentieth-century Boston, but most people have no idea that they exist. Cordelia Clay is one of the few acquainted with filches, alicanti, and growrks (a lengthy monster guide opens the novel), and she secretly helps her veterinarian father care for injured ones at their Beacon Hill home. When her father and most of the monsters disappear, Cordelia sets out to rescue them with the help of Gregory, a local boy who recently acquired a zombie puppy; a filch, which makes its way in the world via flatulence; and a baby dragon that had been living in Cordelia’s oven. Their clues take them to New York and Canada before bringing them back to Boston, where an anti-monster activist threatens everything they hold dear. Though Oliver keeps the action-driven plot moving quickly, there is introspection as well, particularly regarding Cordelia’s relationships with her late mother (a scientist who died while researching monster evolution) and her former best friend Elizabeth (who has monster-related secrets of her own). Oliver’s wordplay is often clever (“the daylight…was starting to seep across the cluttered countertops like the drool of a Mattahorn salivus”), and her collection of monsters is creative and thorough. Cordelia and Gregory face instances of peril that are exciting without feeling too dangerous, and the book’s secondary characters, both human and monster, add much to the story.

Book Details

ISBN

9780062345073

First Release

May 2020

Genre

Fic

Dewey Classification

F

Trim Size

8 1/4" x 5 1/2"

Page Count

384

Accelerated Reader

N/A

Scholastic Reading Counts

N/A

Lexile

N/A

Format

Print Book

Edition

Hardcover edition

Publisher

Harper

Potentially Sensitive Areas

Violence: General

Topics

Fantasy and magic, Dragons, Mythical creatures, Friendship, Monsters, Quests, Mystery and detective stories, Missing persons,

Standard MARC Record

Download Standard MARC Record

Cover Art

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Book Genres

Fantasy, Magic

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