What makes this a children’s classic? The presence of the cute, loveable Grover doesn’t hurt, nor does the fact that the concept is so simply and cleanly executed. But what makes it subversive?
It’s could be considered a toddler’s introduction to the fourth wall. You don’t need to understand what the fourth wall is to understand that, despite it being a static book, Grover is addressing you, the reader, in a way that’s fairly uncommonly used. It’s the encouragment, nay, the imperative to break the rules – on one hand, Grover tells you not to turn the page. On the other, the adult is turning the page – And what happens at the end is rewarding. The contradiction between authorities, and the boundary shattering nature of the journey you go with Grover on, make this a vital book in the library of a subversive child.