Cover image for Turkey monster Thanksgiving
Turkey monster Thanksgiving
Smith, Anne Warren.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Morton Grove, IL : A. Whitman, [2003]

Physical Description:
103 pages ; 21 cm
When her perfectionist classmate and neighbor plans an elaborate Thanksgiving dinner, Katie begins to wonder if the relaxed day she, her father, and her messy little brother usually enjoy means they are not a "real" family.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 3.2 2.0 73525.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
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Item Holds
X Juvenile Current Holiday Item Holiday
X Juvenile Current Holiday Item Holiday

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Nine-year-old Katie Jordan lives with her dad and three-year-old brother. This year, instead of celebrating Thanksgiving in their traditional way by eating pizza in their pajamas, Katie wants to create the perfect holiday and be just like a "real" family. But by Thanksgiving Day, Katie has invited guests Dad didn't expect, festooned the house with what may be poison oak, set the sweet potatoes on fire, and forced her little brother to face a dreadful turkey monster by himself. At the end, however, Katie, her family, and her guests sit down to a most unusual dinner--one that succeeds because it comes more from the heart than from fancy decorations and elaborate menus.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 3-6.atie's mother has gone off to be a country-and-western singer, soatie, her father, and her three-year-old brother, Tyler, have to fend for themselves. No mother in the house really hits home at Thanksgiving, when it seems that pizza will top the menu. Then there'satie's friend, Claire, who is determined that her motherless Thanksgiving (her mother is deceased) is going to be right out of a magazine.atie feels it's up to her to give her little family the holiday they deserve. This has the comfy feeling of a novel from an earlier era, even as predicaments pile one upon another asatie counts down to the special day. Nothing is terribly serious: she has invited company against her father's wishes; Dad has a big report due on Thanksgiving Day (it's not a holiday for Dad'sapanese clients); Tyler runs away; and the turkey won't cook. But don't worry; all turns out well in this simple, easy-to-digest holiday fare. --Ilene Cooper Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

"Kids like you and me-without mothers at home... have to do things perfectly," says Claire, neighbor and classmate of Katie, the narrator of this rather slim novel. To prove it, Claire and her widower father are throwing a Thanksgiving dinner for 40. Katie, whose mother left three years ago to become a Country and Western star, in a fit of competition, claims that she, her father and her three-year-old brother, Tyler, are having holiday guests, too-even though her family tradition is pizza and pajamas for Thanksgiving. She "accidentally" invites her fourth-grade teacher, and spontaneously asks her dad's boss, too. The "turkey monster" (a giant lawn ornament Claire made as decoration, which scares Tyler) metaphor, Katie's mother's pursuit of stardom and Claire's haughtiness may be overblown, but this tale makes clear that every family has its own traditions, none more valid or "real" than the next. Ages 7-10. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 3-6-Since her mother left to become a traveling country-and-western singer, fourth-grader Katie, her three-year-old brother Tyler, and their father have spent Thanksgiving lounging in their pajamas, munching on pizza and popcorn, and watching football on TV. When her perfectionist classmate Claire Plummer taunts her with pictures from Beautiful Living of perfect celebrations, Katie starts to think that a grand dinner would help cement her family together, but she is embarrassed about her brother's rude table manners. Then she accidentally invites her teacher to Thanksgiving dinner, and she and her father scramble to come up with a meal. Readers are apt to sympathize with Katie's concerns about the cohesiveness of her family, while deft touches of humor add comic relief and lighten the mood. Barbara Cohen's Molly's Pilgrim (Bantam, 1990) would make a good counterpart in a class discussion. Richly drawn characterizations, a brisk pace, and a theme subtly woven into the plot add up to an enjoyable read.-James K. Irwin, Poplar Creek Main Library, Steamwood, IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.