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Children's Fiction Monsters

Gilly's Monster Trap

illustrated by Cyndi Marko

Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Initial publish date
Apr 2023
Monsters, Mysteries & Detective Stories, Friendship
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2023
    List Price
    $10.99 USD
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2023
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 4 to 8
  • Grade: p to 3
  • Reading age: 4 to 8


A young girl and her goldfish sidekick set out to trap a monster and instead wind up making a new friend in this debut picture book that’s perfect for fans of How to Catch a Monster and Jules vs. the Ocean.

Gilly loves to flap her flippers in Lighthouse Bay…until a mysterious monster starts menacing the market! It swipes Gilly’s flippers, snatches fish, and nabs nets. So Gilly hatches a plan: she is going to catch the sneaky, rotten monster! With the help of her goldfish, Finnegan, and the townspeople, she builds a trap.

But when things go awry, Gilly discovers she and the monster may have been after the same thing all along—a friend.

About the author

Cyndi Marko is the author/illustrator of the Kung Pow Chicken series (Scholastic, 2014) and This Little Piggy: An Owner's Manual (Simon & Schuster, 2017). She studied Fine Arts at Okanagan University College in Kelowna, B.C., where she learned to turn old bicycle parts into works of art, and not much else. From there she went on to Humber College in Toronto, Ontario, to study graphic design and prepress technology. She currently lives in B.C. and is a moderator of the SCBWI Blueboards.

Cyndi Marko's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"A cheerful tale certain to ensnare readers."

Kirkus Reviews

"Rendered in sprightly watercolor and ink cartoons, Marko’s action-packed picture book debut features a panoply of compositional styles, lively language, and a protagonist that is the very definition of mettle."

Publishers Weekly

Other titles by Cyndi Marko