THE BOY IN THE DRAWER, by Robert Munsch, Michael Martchenko, Annick Press


Shelley finds a small boy in her drawer who causes a lot of trouble. Robert Munsch’s award-winning books have become a staple on the bookshelves of families worldwide. His stories reflect the joys and challenges of everyday living, offering zany, yet utterly normal, experiences of family life. Munsch has sold over 40 million books in 20 countries and many languages, including French, Spanish, Arabic, and Chinese. Beginning with Mud Puddle in 1979, Munsch continued captivating children and adults with stories like Thomas’s Snowsuit, David’s Father, I Have to Go!, and the classic Love You Forever.

Out May 1, 1986

24 pages approx.


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

This book was considered not one of Robert Munsch’s best.  I found that so hard to believe because after all, he’s Robert Munsch.  However, it is possible for even the most brilliant of authors to slip up.  But I like to reserve judgement for myself.  What might appeal or not appeal to one person, may do so for another.

So I asked for the book.

The publisher sent it to me and I began flipping through the pages.  It’s your typical Munsch book, glossy ‘square’ with absolutely amazing artwork.  Adorable, bright and clean in their appearance. So the poor ratings couldn’t be due to Martchenko’s efforts.

The size and presentation of the book is typical of all Munsch books, so he’s consistent with his work in appearance.  He didn’t sway from the picture book requirements either.

So I began to read the story.

In the beginning, I thought the “boy” was a gremlin, messing up the house. So what is a gremlin? An imaginary creature blamed for things others do.

Which told me everything.  This story is about telling lies. Once told, the lie grows and grows until it becomes so big, you end up in a huge mess, just like Shelley.  I find it interesting that the lies took on the form of a little mischievous boy.  I also think the story is deep and thought provoking.  I wonder if parents question whether the moral of the story will be understood by children in this reading bracket. Parents shouldn’t under estimate their children’s abilities.

Overall, I think Munsch’s concept was extraordinary and thought provoking.  It’s an interesting spin on all the other tales I’ve read about lying, how lies snowball, and the consequence that occur.

His resolution to the dilemma is unique and very creative. Instead of saying “lying is bad!” He shows in a fun way how a lie can grow and grow until the truth is faced.

As always Munsch, in my opinion, did exactly what he set out to do and with the creative work of Martchenko, he was successful.

I guess the only question left is would children of this readership understand the moral of the story.

PS.  My daughter saw the Munsch book on my desk and snatched it up before I finished typing this review… so what does that tell you?

I gave the book:


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