Maggie Sparks and the Monster Baby (Maggie Sparks #1)

by Steve Smallman (Author) Esther Hernando (Illustrator)

Maggie Sparks and the Monster Baby (Maggie Sparks #1)
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
Series: Maggie Sparks

Maggie Sparks does NOT want a baby brother! Especially not one who is noisy, smelly and gets ALL the attention. The good thing is, Maggie's a witch. A super powerful, super smart, super talented witch ... who sometimes gets her spells wrong. But that won't stop her finding a way to win back her mom and dad from the evil monster baby. Especially when she's got Bat, her pet chameleon, to help. All she needs is a little magic ... About the Maggie Sparks series: Step into the magical world of Maggie Sparks: the mischievous little witch who turns every day into an adventure. Join Maggie as she learns how to tackle school, make friends and most confusing of all: understand her emotions - when she's not facing dragons and meeting aliens, that is! 

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School Library Journal

Starred Review

Gr 1-3--Take a familiar story of a sibling who is jealous of a new baby, infuse it with a little magic, pair it with fantastic illustrations, and the result is a winsome story that will engage young readers. Maggie, who just happens to be able to perform magic, is loved and adored by her two parents and her wizard grandpa. However, life takes a turn when her parents go "to the hospital to swap Mom's big tummy for a baby." Why would they want a baby when they have her? Her life is turned upside down when baby brother Alfie arrives home. Hernando's expressive illustrations show just how Maggie feels when her parents show off a screaming, stinky monster who seems to delight everyone else. After some magical scheming, an important lesson, and a fun twist, things come to a sweet conclusion. Charming family portraits show Maggie, Alfie, and her mother with brown skin and curly black hair, while Dad and Grandpa have pale skin and lighter hair. VERDICT A delightfully magical take on a familiar situation, enhanced by pitch-perfect illustrations. Recommended for all early chapter book collections.--Laura Fields Eason

Copyright 2022 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Steve Smallman
Steve Smallman has taken up writing his own stories after illustrating children's books for over 30 years. He also teaches illustration and mural-painting workshops in schools. When he's not working, Steve enjoys films, television, gardening, and walking in the countryside.

Miguel Ordóñez studied Illustration at Escuela de Arte N° 10, Madrid, and Graphic Design at Central Saint Martins College, London. He has worked in publishing, advertising and print, and two of his books have been featured on the New York Times bestsellers list. His illustrations for Jimmy Fallon's Your Baby's First Word Will Be Dada have been honored by the American Society of Illustrators. Miguel lives in Madrid and works in his own studio, where he combines graphic with illustration projects with teaching Visual Communication and Creativity at the Instituto Europeo di Design.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
May 20, 2022
Maggie Sparks

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