CHARLEY'S FIRST NIGHT by Amy Hest
Kirkus Star

CHARLEY'S FIRST NIGHT

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 8
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

The tenderness a child feels for his new puppy seeps from the pages of a book sure to be instantly beloved.

 “I carried him in my old baby blanket, which was soft and midnight blue, and we were new together and I was very, very careful not to slip in the snow and I thought about his name.” Charley Korn is the puppy; the young narrator is Henry Korn. Hest’s stream-of-consciousness sentences are interspersed with short, declarative statements and bits of dialogue, creating a dreamy, lyrical cadence. Oxenbury’s pencil-and-watercolor illustrations are infused with softness and warmth, depicting the loving bond between boy and dog. Even the design of the book, with text and pictures set within wide borders on each page, inspires a feeling of intimacy. Once home, Henry shows Charley around ("This is home, Charley") and recounts his parents’ expectations, including the one where Charley will sleep in the kitchen—alone—forever. Henry dutifully arranges Charley’s bed, but the nighttime crying begins. After the second rescue, Henry shows Charley his room, where Charley wants to be put on Henry’s bed—or so Henry interprets. Thus the two spend the night, predictably the first of many, cuddled together.

Be forewarned: Youngsters will find Charley as irresistible as Henry does and will no doubt beg for puppies of their own. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-7636-4055-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Candlewick
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2012




BEST CHILDREN'S BOOKS OF 2012: PICTURE BOOKS:

ChildrenFIFTY CENTS AND A DREAM by Jabari Asim
by Jabari Asim
ChildrenELECTRIC BEN by Robert Byrd
by Robert Byrd
ChildrenSPIRIT SEEKER by Gary Golio
by Gary Golio
ChildrenI HAVE A DREAM by Kadir Nelson
by Martin Luther King

MORE BY AMY HEST

ChildrenARE YOU SURE, MOTHER BEAR? by Amy Hest
by Amy Hest
ChildrenMY OLD PAL, OSCAR by Amy Hest
by Amy Hest
ChildrenWHEN CHARLEY MET GRAMPA by Amy Hest
by Amy Hest

MORE BY HELEN OXENBURY

ChildrenWHEN CHARLEY MET GRAMPA by Amy Hest
by Amy Hest
ChildrenKING JACK AND THE DRAGON by Peter Bently
by Peter Bently

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenMY DOG IS THE BEST by Laurie Ann Thompson
by Laurie Ann Thompson
ChildrenHOMER by Elisha Cooper
by Elisha Cooper
ChildrenDOG GONE! by Leeza Hernandez
by Leeza Hernandez