87 books like Welcome to Monsterville

By Laura Shovan, Michael Rothenberg (illustrator),

Here are 87 books that Welcome to Monsterville fans have personally recommended if you like Welcome to Monsterville. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Jumbies

Stephanie Willing Author Of West of the Sea

From my list on where the magic and monsters are real.

Why am I passionate about this?

I think any kid wishes they could save their parent, or a loved one, from suffering. I know I did. When I was a pre-teen, my mom began to withdraw from friendships, church, and community, and she took me and my siblings with her. Her moods were unstable, and sometimes I blamed myself, and other times I just tried to keep her happy. I grew up inside her fairytale, until as an adult, I could recognize the signs of mental illness. I found myself wishing there was a magical reason she was the way she was. All the books on this list are linked by the fantastical way they explore family grief, isolation, and hope. 

Stephanie's book list on where the magic and monsters are real

Stephanie Willing Why did Stephanie love this book?

This middle-grade horror novel follows Corinne, a courageous girl who isn’t afraid to go into the forest she’s been warned about, but when she does, something evil follows her back out.

The jumbies of Caribbean folklore are malevolent tricksters, and there is one image from this book that I will never, ever get out of my head. I’m not going to tell you what it is! But it’s toward the end and has to do with the douens and backward feet. It’s a great spooky read, but I really love how the heart of the story is rooted in loss, memory, and trying to save a parent. And not for nothing, it’ll make you crave oranges! 

By Tracey Baptiste,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Jumbies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Corinne La Mer isn't afraid of anything. Not scorpions, not the boys who tease her, and certainly not jumbies. They're just tricksters parents make up to frighten their children. Then one night Corinne chases an agouti all the way into the forbidden forest. Those shining yellow eyes that followed her to the edge of the trees, they couldn't belong to a jumbie. Or could they? When Corinne spots a beautiful stranger speaking to the town witch at the market the next day, she knows something unexpected is about to happen. And when this same beauty, called Severine, turns up at…


Book cover of Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster

Karen Krossing Author Of Monster vs. Boy

From my list on middle-grade about monsters and facing our fears.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was small, a goblin lived in my closet. I was sure of it. At night, I huddled under my blanket, listening to the unexplainable noises coming from my closet. And yet, I also have felt like that monster hiding in the closet—afraid to enter the wide world, afraid of who I might meet and what they might think of me. I have felt different. Misunderstood. This list of monstrous middle-grade books shows how our story monsters are more than metaphors. They are a way to understand ourselves, our big emotions, our daydreams, and our nightmares. I guarantee these books will delight and empower younger and older readers.

Karen's book list on middle-grade about monsters and facing our fears

Karen Krossing Why did Karen love this book?

Set in 1875 London, this children’s novel tells the story of a hungry, overworked girl who labors as a chimney sweep and the golem made of soot who cares for her.

I adore the idea of a soot golem as a caregiver and someone to care for. And don’t we all need to love and be loved, even though it can feel scary and risky at times? This story made me want my own soot monster. 

By Jonathan Auxier,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Sweep as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Auxier comes an enchanting standalone novel about the power of friendship and the beauty of finding home

Nan Sparrow is one of London's countless "climbers"-children who spend their days cleaning chimneys. The work is brutal and dangerous. Thanks to her wits and will, Nan has managed to beat the deadly odds time and time again. But when she gets stuck in a chimney fire, it seems the end has come. Instead, she awakens to find herself unharmed in an abandoned attic. And she is not alone. Huddled in the corner is a…


Book cover of Rules of Summer

Karen Krossing Author Of Monster vs. Boy

From my list on middle-grade about monsters and facing our fears.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was small, a goblin lived in my closet. I was sure of it. At night, I huddled under my blanket, listening to the unexplainable noises coming from my closet. And yet, I also have felt like that monster hiding in the closet—afraid to enter the wide world, afraid of who I might meet and what they might think of me. I have felt different. Misunderstood. This list of monstrous middle-grade books shows how our story monsters are more than metaphors. They are a way to understand ourselves, our big emotions, our daydreams, and our nightmares. I guarantee these books will delight and empower younger and older readers.

Karen's book list on middle-grade about monsters and facing our fears

Karen Krossing Why did Karen love this book?

For me, this picture book captures how childhood is both magical and terrifying.

For a younger brother, summer becomes a series of rules to navigate within a surreal landscape peopled only by unpredictable monsters and his big brother, who makes the rules. This imagined world, where stepping on a snail can conjure a tornado, feels strangely authentic and satisfying.

Each time I read this book, I’m fascinated again.

By Shaun Tan,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Rules of Summer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 6, 7, and 8.

What is this book about?

A beautiful paperback edition of the future classic by Academy Award and Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award winner - Shaun Tan combines humour and surreal fantasy to picture a summer in the lives of two boys. Never break the rules. Especially if you don't understand them. The boys hide from a giant red rabbit and outwit a crowd of scary eagles, but when their games become ever darker and sinister they learn that breaking the rules can be dangerous.'Visually fascinating.' - The New York Times'Thrilling, disturbing and hard to shake...one startling image after another.' - Wall Street JournalOther titles by Shaun…


Book cover of The Girl Who Became a Tree: A Story Told in Poems

Karen Krossing Author Of Monster vs. Boy

From my list on middle-grade about monsters and facing our fears.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was small, a goblin lived in my closet. I was sure of it. At night, I huddled under my blanket, listening to the unexplainable noises coming from my closet. And yet, I also have felt like that monster hiding in the closet—afraid to enter the wide world, afraid of who I might meet and what they might think of me. I have felt different. Misunderstood. This list of monstrous middle-grade books shows how our story monsters are more than metaphors. They are a way to understand ourselves, our big emotions, our daydreams, and our nightmares. I guarantee these books will delight and empower younger and older readers.

Karen's book list on middle-grade about monsters and facing our fears

Karen Krossing Why did Karen love this book?

A grief-stricken girl, a library that is not what it seems, and a forest of memories.

I get lost in the world of this melancholy tree monster, told through poems. Sometimes, our grief grows confusing roots and branches. Sometimes, we need to walk through brambles to find our way home. This verse novel is inventive and heart-stoppingly real.

By Joseph Coelho, Kate Milner (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Girl Who Became a Tree as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Daphne is unbearably sad and adrift. She feels the painful loss of her father acutely and seeks solace both in the security of her local library and the escape her phone screen provides by blocking out the world around her. As Daphne tries to make sense of what has happened she recalls memories of shared times and stories past, and in facing the darkness she finds a way back from the tangle of fear and confusion, to feel connected once more with her friends and family. The Girl Who Became a Tree sees Joseph Coelho deploy a wide variety of…


Book cover of Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ

Howard M. Guttman Author Of When Goliaths Clash: Managing Executive Conflict to Build a More Dynamic Organization

From my list on managing those "keep you up at night" organizational issues.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the principal of Guttman Development Strategies (GDS), an organization development firm that works with senior executives and their teams in major corporations globally to build horizontal, high-performance teams, provide leadership coaching, and develop leadership skills. I am a speaker and author of three acclaimed management books and dozens of articles in business publications.

Howard's book list on managing those "keep you up at night" organizational issues

Howard M. Guttman Why did Howard love this book?

The insights in this groundbreaking book apply across the board, from social and family life to interacting and managing others in organizational life.

What factors are at play when people of high IQ flounder while those who are more modestly endowed succeed? Goleman argues that the difference is Emotional Intelligence, which, as he explains, comprises empathy, effective social skills/communication, self-awareness, self-regulation, and motivation.

I’ve watched too many of the allegedly best and brightest, tough-minded executives flame out because they failed to rein in emotional impulse, read others’ feelings, or handle interpersonal relationships. The skills are learnable, and in today’s asymmetric, hybrid, matrixed organizations, they are essential for success.

By Daniel Goleman,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Emotional Intelligence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The groundbreaking bestseller that redefines intelligence and success Does IQ define our destiny? Daniel Goleman argues that our view of human intelligence is far too narrow, and that our emotions play major role in thought, decision making and individual success. Self-awareness, impulse control, persistence, motivation, empathy and social deftness are all qualities that mark people who excel: whose relationships flourish, who are stars in the workplace. With new insights into the brain architecture underlying emotion and rationality, Goleman shows precisely how emotional intelligence can be nurtured and strengthened in all of us.


Book cover of Leadership Presence

John Beeson Author Of The Unwritten Rules: The Six Skills You Need to Get Promoted to the Executive Level

From my list on advancing and succeeding at the executive level.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve spent many years as a management consultant to a range of big, global corporations, smaller companies, and not-for-profits. I also headed up succession planning and management development at two major companies. I decided to go into this field based on a strong conviction, a conviction that continues today: that leadership counts. Strong leaders benefit people in their organizations and, ultimately, society itself. Having worked with many senior leaders and led organizations myself, I know the range of pressures executives face and how easy it is to fail. Companies need a supply of capable, well-equipped senior leaders, and those who aspire to top-level positions need guideposts about achieving their career aspirations. 

John's book list on advancing and succeeding at the executive level

John Beeson Why did John love this book?

In the course of researching my book, I spoke to a number of people responsible for selecting senior leaders in their organizations and asked what they looked for. A strong majority mentioned executive or leadership presence—although few could define or describe it with any degree of specificity. But an “I’ll know it if I see it” approach doesn’t cut it for people who want to reach the executive level.

This book is a compilation of highly practical articles that, taken together, not only define leadership presence but suggest tangible steps to develop and project it. 

By Harvard Business Review, John Beeson, Amy J.C. Cuddy , Deborah Tannen , Amy Jen Su

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Leadership Presence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Lead with charisma and confidence.

Many leaders consider "executive presence" a make-or-break factor in high-powered promotions. But what is this elusive quality, and how do you develop it?

This book explains how to build the charisma, confidence, and decisiveness that top leaders project. Whether you're delivering a critical presentation or managing a hectic meeting, you'll be inspired to approach the situation with new strength.

This volume includes the work of:

Deborah Tannen Amy J. C. Cuddy Amy Jen Su

This collection of articles includes "Deconstructing Executive Presence," by John Beeson; "How New Managers Can Send the Right Leadership Signals," by…


Book cover of The School of Life: An Emotional Education

Wendy Thomas Russell Author Of Relax It's Just God: How and Why to Talk to Your Kids about Religion When You're Not Religious

From my list on finding your own philosophy of life.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m drawn to the intersection of psychology, philosophy and pragmatism — a dynamic that can be found in the books I write, the conversations I enjoy, and the ways I choose to spend my down time. By getting in touch with my personal psychology (influenced by my brain chemistry, temperament and upbringing) and studying various philosophies (from the Stoics to Alain de Botton), I have begun to find my own truth and formulate my own best practices in life. I don’t always nail it — not by a long shot — but that’s why it’s called a practice. There are so many different ways to live a contented life. It can be awfully rewarding to locate your own.

Wendy's book list on finding your own philosophy of life

Wendy Thomas Russell Why did Wendy love this book?

Since discovering Religion for Atheists, while researching my first book, I have loved me some Alain de Botton, but I recommend this one because I think it offers the most in terms of practical wisdom across a host of categories. Alain has spent his life doing for others what I spend a lot of time doing for myself: Trying to discover universal truths that lead to a greater enjoyment of life without having to resort to religious dogma or magical thinking. He explains plainly how to love life for what it offers, wholly accept what it does not, and understand that we all, truly, are in this together.

By The School of Life,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The School of Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Discover everything you were never taught at school about how to lead a better life...

'Amazing. He talk about sophisticated things in simple but not simplistic ways. A beautiful book that you should have in your home' Chris Evans

By the bestselling author of The Consolations of Philosophy, The Art of Travel and The Course of Love

'Alain de Botton likes to take big, complex subjects and write about them with thoughtful and deceptive innocence' Observer

As heard on Elizabeth Day's How to Fail podcast

We spend years in school learning facts and figures but the one thing we're never…


Book cover of Constructive Thinking: The Key to Emotional Intelligence

Stuart Hanscomb Author Of Critical Thinking: The Basics

From my list on interpersonal communication and influence.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an academic at the University of Glasgow with a background in philosophy and psychology. My approach to critical thinking is broad and informed by several other teaching and research interests: emotional intelligence, the psychology of influence, interpersonal communication, and virtue ethics. Motivating much of what I do is the question: How are we to live well? With respect to critical thinking I don’t just deal with the nature and structure of arguments, but also with the role they play in constructive dialogues, and how poor reasoning is linked to psychological biases and the absence of certain virtues. The books I have chosen here are representative of these concerns.

Stuart's book list on interpersonal communication and influence

Stuart Hanscomb Why did Stuart love this book?

Ostensibly a book about emotional intelligence, this is in effect an account of Epstein’s theory of the self (see Chapter 3 onwards). I am a strong advocate of ‘dual process’ theories, the idea that we have two minds or modes of thinking, one that is fast, automatic, and reliant on heuristics, and another that is slower, deliberative, and rational. The most famous example of this is in the work of Kahneman and Tversky, who have identified various biases we employ in quick decision making. This understanding is vital for effective critical thinking, but I find Epstein’s notion of an affect-driven ‘experiential’ system to have deeper and more wide-ranging explanatory power. This applies both to self-knowledge, and to how we can engage more constructively with others.

By Seymour Epstein,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Constructive Thinking as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is a book on how to gain control of one's emotions. It is a serious book that contains a theory of automatic processing it presents and its implications for controlling emotions. Epstein is a professor of personality psychology and a highly regarded research psychologist who has supported his theory with extensive research published in the most demanding professional journals. He was motivated to write the book by the success of a course he taught based on his theory. Students reported obtaining an understanding and control of their emotions that they never thought possible and that they said changed the…


Book cover of Helping People Change: Coaching with Compassion for Lifelong Learning and Growth

Ed Evarts Author Of The Bravery Trick: Four Easy Ways to Say Hard Things

From my list on building your unique leadership style.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been interested in leadership style since my teenage years. My father was a leader in a retailing organization, and I was entranced by behaviors that seemed to connect with others and those that did not. As I grew older, I started to think about leadership style behaviors and models that might capture the most effective ones. While I recognize that leadership needs vary based on industry, scope, and tenure, I do believe that we all should know the leadership styles that are important to us to the extent that we can describe them if we are asked to do so.

Ed's book list on building your unique leadership style

Ed Evarts Why did Ed love this book?

As a leader and leadership coach, understanding great ways to lead others is critical. This book focuses on key behaviors that we all need to be successfully led by others. The book mainly focuses on how to lead and coach others with compassion, as this is not about you; it is about the other person.

While most do not think of this daily, our personal goals and visions lead regularly–they help define what we do. Ensuring you know the personal goals and vision of those whom you are leading is needed in order to effectively move them from where they are today to a new and better place.

By Richard E. Boyatzis, Melvin Smith, Ellen Van Oosten

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Helping People Change as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

You're trying to help--but is it working?

Helping others is a good thing. Often, as a leader, manager, doctor, teacher, or coach, it's central to your job. But even the most well-intentioned efforts to help others can be undermined by a simple truth: We almost always focus on trying to "fix" people, correcting problems or filling the gaps between where they are and where we think they should be. Unfortunately, this doesn't work well, if at all, to inspire sustained learning or positive change.

There's a better way. In this powerful, practical book, emotional intelligence expert Richard Boyatzis and Weatherhead…


Book cover of Wolfsbane

Vanessa Rasanen Author Of On These Black Sands

From my list on with characters you’d want in your crew.

Why am I passionate about this?

I once thought I was broken, because I became so invested in the characters I read about. I carried them with me out into the real world, where their struggles kept me from focusing on my own tasks. Then I learned this connection is a feature of reading, not a bug. While some people collect book boy/girl-friends–and I do enjoy swooning over a love interest–I am more drawn to those characters I’d want to share a rum with or meet for a beer. Authentic characters show us we’re not alone and inspire us to grow. They become so much more to us than mere words on the page.

Vanessa's book list on with characters you’d want in your crew

Vanessa Rasanen Why did Vanessa love this book?

The Discarded Heroes series holds a special place for me, as these books gave me the push I needed to face my fears and finally pursue publishing my writing. The entire Nightshade team was written so authentically, they feel like part of my extended family. I’m recommending book three specifically, because of Canyon and Dani. Their ability to acknowledge their weaknesses, take responsibility for their mistakes, and push through anything to finish their mission still inspires me.

By Ronie Kendig,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Wolfsbane as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Rapid-Fire Rewrite of the 2012 Christy Award Winner--Expanded & Updated--with 100 new pages!Army demolitions expert Danielle Roark narrowly escaped a brutal guerrilla general. Months later, she’s charged with espionage and forced to return to the very jungle where her nightmares began. Her only hope rests in the former Special Forces operator who escorts her down and vows they’ll both come back alive.Disgusted with the suits on Capitol Hill, Canyon Metcalfe is still wrestling with memories of a mission gone bad. But taking the role of protector, he’s determined to make this endeavor end in victory. What he isn’t expecting…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in emotional intelligence, monsters, and apples?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about emotional intelligence, monsters, and apples.

Emotional Intelligence Explore 23 books about emotional intelligence
Monsters Explore 163 books about monsters
Apples Explore 17 books about apples