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Papertoy Monsters: 50 Cool Papertoys You Can Make Yourself! Paperback – December 29, 2010
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However, when he tried to pop the paper pieces out himself, he couldn't help but rip the paper with his little hands, and it was too hard for him to apply glue very accurately to very small areas, pull the paper together, and hold it long enough for it to adhere. A 9-year-old with excellent motor skills and a very long attention span might be able to do the easiest of the easy patterns. I don't have kids myself so I may not be the best judge, but this 9-year-old would have gotten very frustrated and sad if he hadn't had his auntie around to make a bunch of monsters for him.
That said, as an adult I admit I was sort of glad that I got to make the monsters because it was so fun. The pattern pieces are clearly labeled, the instructions are excellent and very clear, and it was really easy to put them together with a very good quality glue stick. There's a great glossary at the front containing some basic hints for constructing the monsters, and there's a list of contributors at the back giving the name of the designer of each monster pattern (lots of different designers contributed), a bio, and a URL for their own websites. This is a great collaborative project. I think my favorite thing about it is that the monsters are really edgy but the written and illustrated content is totally acceptable for little kids and doesn't talk down to them.
However, there are a few problems I had with the layout. Although the toys are pre-perforated, it is quite difficult just to punch them out - I had to use an x-acto knife (not an option for kids). I don't think kid-friendly scissors could be as exact as necessary in order to cut out some parts of the toys either, so any cutting would have to be done with parental supervision.
Also, the toys are printed on thinner paper (thinner than an average piece of cardstock). My craft glue tended to make the paper disintegrate, so I would suggest using double-sided tape or glue dots for construction. I also agree with another reviewer that this is not a book for younger kids - the toys are just too difficult for children to handle. I would suggest an age range of at least 10 years old (probably more like 12 and older). Also, remember that there is no CD-ROM included in this book, so any mistakes are permanent (no re-printing). Since the toys are double-sided, it is quite difficult to make practice copy, too.
I just bought a paper airplane paper craft book (for $17!) because it was the only one at the bookstore similar to this one. Bad idea for a few reasons... Paper airplanes just work great by folding paper, not delicately crafted from punched out parts. It's kinda like trying to reinvent the mouse trap. Anyway. The book was pale & bland in comparison so I'm off to search for another book that can keep us all entertained & amused for days before we finish these last few monsters! It will be tough for a book to follow this one! I'm expecting a few more wompers like the airplane paper crafts. We've got a 5 yr old boy & 4 yr old girl as well so any recommendations are welcome!