“The Legend of Monroe, the Moat Monster” – not a typical children’s book.
This book does double duty in the sense that it introduces a lovable character named after Fort Monroe, and it shows the fort’s historical features in photographs.
I’ve received emails and phone calls about the contents of “The Legend of Monroe, the Moat Monster” book. Most people wanted to know what ages and reading level were targeted for the story.
This story, the first in the series, was written for an average reading level (10-12 year old to young adult) to introduce the fictional character, Monroe the Moat Monster to the general public while setting the scene of his birth at Fort Monroe, Virginia, the only post in the U.S. with a moat.
Photographs were essential in showing the imposing old, stone moat walls and the beauty that surrounds the entire installation.
Since the fort is steeped in history and has incredible views it made sense to show the moat monster in the waters and on the beaches that surround it. Mere drawings alone could not capture the beauty of the area. Photographs on each page best depict the essence of the Chesapeake Bay, Mill Creek, and even the James River shoreline at nearby Fort Eustis – waters in the geographic region called Hampton Roads.
Fort Monroe was named a Historical Monument Nov. 1, 2011. It is truly America’s Fort with history dating back to the 1600s. One page in every book, titled: “A Little History at Fort Monroe” will feature a site on the post with a description and photograph. The Old Point Comfort Lighthouse is featured in the first book.
It was a goal to entertain and educate children with a legendary character on one of America’s oldest forts.