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Name That Trauma :: Reader Mike on a Baby-Swapping Monster Book

February 19th, 2009 by aunt john · 10 Comments

I saw this site and have spent the past few days reading various traumas; most of them I can understand what makes them so frightening. There are a few traumas that I would love to ask about but above all others there’s one that sticks in my memory more than any other. I believe I was four or five (‘89-‘90) when I was shown a children’s book. The details are very vague, but if memory serves me correctly it was a fairytale about monsters that stole a woman’s baby and replaced it with a monster (I want to say ogre but don’t quote me on that).

I can barely remember anything else, but I would also venture to say that someone goes to fight the monsters and reclaim the baby. Sadly that’s it. The picture of the “baby” that had been put as a replacement to the child was very frightening and I refused to ever read it again. Unfortunately I can neither remember who had shown it to me nor what ever happened. If anyone could help me I would be greatly obliged.

UNK SEZ: Anybody out there remember this baby swapped with monster tale?!

UPDATE: Name That Trauma Solved! It’s “Outside Over There” by Maurice Sendak. Mad props to the Mickster for solving this one so quickly!

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10 responses so far ↓

  • 1 micksterNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:11 am

    Could it possibly be this book, Outside over There by Maurice Sendak (Where the Wild Things Are). Read the description and look at the illustrations here: http://browseinside.harpercollins.com/index.aspx?isbn13=9780064431859 

  • 2 ReboNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:36 am

    *shivers* That book is so creepy.  And ps, the plot of that book is basically mirrored by the plot of The Labryinth.

  • 3 micksterNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:40 am

    It really must have been the inspiration for Labyrinth.

  • 4 ReboNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:47 am

    I guess I phrased that wonky.  Of course Outside Over There was written WAY before Labryinth.  (I worked in a children’s bookstore for 5 years and know all about Maurice)

  • 5 ReboNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:53 am

    Oh, I see.  You were helpfully pointing out my incorrect useage of the article “The” before Labyrinth.  Also my gross misspelling of the word (twice now) in my haste and excitement.  Thanks.

  • 6 micksterNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:59 am

    I promise I wasn’t correcting you. I was just agreeing that Outside Over There must have been some inspiration for the excellent Henson movie.

  • 7 MikeNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    Wow Mickster, you managed to find that one really quickly.  Even looking at the first illustration I saw that it was that hauntingly eerie style that threw me off to begin with.  Outside over There is one of my first childhood traumas.  Thanks so much for solving that mystery.

  • 8 micksterNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    Mike,
    I am so happy I could help!

  • 9 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Feb 19, 2009 at 10:12 pm

    Good Job Mickster! What would we do without your expertise? Does anyone recall Sendak’s “In the Night Kitchen?” I remember the three Oliver Hardy cooks freaking me out.

  • 10 BQueenNo Gravatar // Feb 24, 2009 at 6:30 pm

    My favorite creepy Sendak kid’s book was “Higglety Pigglety Pop.”  What’s with that guy and creepy babies?

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