Beast Feast

Beast Feast

By Author / Illustrator

Emma Yarlett, Emma Yarlett



Age range(s)



Walker Books Ltd







Laugh-out-loud funny, fantastically illustrated and an absolute must in an Early Years classroom. One of my favourite picture books of this year, this book was a delight to share with my young children and also with their class mates in Reception and Year 1. Beast Feast tells the story of a bright pink monster (Beast) who, 'one very hungry day', goes out to catch his dinner. The Beast catches a small child and declares, 'You are Dinner!'. Dinner looks worried as the Beast begins writing letters to all his Beast friends, inviting them over for a dinner party to share Dinner. As the letters come back to the Beast, Beast decides to fatten up Dinner with lots of gruesome concoctions. But Dinner has other ideas and begins to teach Beast about other things like food he has never tried before - chocolate cake - and days out together - swimming in the sea - and other adventures together. As the reply letters continue, Beast is 'beginning to wish he didn't have to EAT Dinner.' Beast no longer looks like a Beast to Dinner, and Dinner no longer looks like Dinner to the Beast as the two become friends. Not only does this story have an important message throughout of friendship and how your first impression of a person can change, but it also incorporates letters on every page, perfect for an Early Years environment. My children (4 and 6) were delighted with this story as we turned each page to read the letters and were rolling on the floor laughing with the silly language of the monsters. Charlie (age 6) said: 'I liked it a lot, my favourite bit was the chocolate cake, where all the monsters stuff their faces with cake'. My copy was used by a Year 1 teacher whose children were learning how to structure a letter and this book fit in perfectly with this module; this book is perfect for teaching those skills but with the humour of 5/6 year olds. The children wanted to keep it, the teachers wanted to keep it. The illustrations are wonderfully colourful and funny; Beastly but not scary. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this story with my children and it has already become a firm favourite at any time of the day. Well done Emma Yarlett for creating a story with so many exciting features but with an important message embroiled into the story. Beast Feast can also be used alongside The Day the Crayons Quit by Oliver Jeffers and The Troll and the Oliver by Adam Stower. Picture book / Ages 4+ / Reviewed by Joanna Hewish, teacher

Suggested Reading Age 5+


Beats Feast is the brilliant story about a Beast and 'Dinner', aka a little boy. When the beast finds his 'Dinner' he sends out a letter to all his beast friends, inviting them to the Beast Feast! As each beast replies, the boy teaches him something new to make the recipe for 'Dinner' even better. As the story evolves so does their friendship and they end up having the best Beast Feast ever. The story is filled with humour and the illustrations are brilliant, vibrant and eye catching to the younger eye. The different styles of writing from the Beast, to 'Dinner', to the beast's letters are great and easily accessible for children. The letters that you can open inside are fantastic and tailored to each beast according to their appearance and personality. It reminds me a lot of a 'Jolly Postman' style books with children being able to be interactive with the book. The attention to detail in this book is fantastic, even the inside of the cover is full of recipes with quirks and twists which makes it come alive. The book lends itself brilliantly to get the children to create their own beasts and write their own letters to the Beast accepting his invitation. This could also be used as a great PSHE story about friendship and accepting differences. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and cannot wait to use it with my class or as an end of day story! 27 pages / Ages 7+ / Reviewed by Lauren Maidman, teacher

Suggested Reading Age 7+


What a feast of a delight this book is! Gorgeous, funny and just enough scary for 5-8 year olds. It is also packed with letters so a great way to introduce letter-writing in class. Meet Beast, a bright pink, sharp-toothed hairy monster who is dangling a small boy by the foot. "You are DINNER", said Beast. "No I'm not", said Dinner. Beast decides to set about fattening up Dinner and invites his other monster friends to join him. Each of the monsters replies in a folder letter on the page, with their own suggestions for making Dinner fatter and more juicy, salty and muddy. However, Beast and Dinner end up having a lot of fun in the process of making him fatter / more salty / more muddy, and they become quite fond of each other - until Dinner doesn't look like dinner any more...but Beast's guests are on their way. Can they come up with a solution? The tension mounts until we turn the final page, which is where the other monsters' suggestions for a great dinner come in. This is a fabulous book to read aloud because of the tension in each page-turn, as well as Emma Yarlett's fabulous illustrations. Beast Feast would, as I've said, also make a great (and funny) introduction to letter-writing using the reply letters each monster pens. This can be followed up with children making up their own monsters and a letter about its dietary requirements! You could also use Beast Feast to explore recipes and why we eat what we eat to stay healthy (the monsters' diets being less than healthy), as well as talking about Halloween and what makes us scared, and how to be brave - Dinner, the little boy at the heart of this story, somehow manages to turn every scary moment into something fun and affectionate. I adore Emma Yarlett's books (she also created Nibbles the book-eating monster), and if you enjoy Beast Feast, seek out her earlier book Dragon Post - another letter-writing treat! Picture book / Ages 5-8 years / Reviewed by Ellen Green

Suggested Reading Age 5+


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