Truer words…capping a less-contentious alternative to Candace Fleming’s Go Sleep in Your Own Bed!, illustrated by Lori...

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MY BED

Reindeer would like to go to sleep but can’t seem to find a bed that doesn’t already belong to someone else.

Leading a large cast of droopy-eyed animals in nightclothes, Reindeer tries to sack out in bed after bed—only to discover time after time (with lifts of successive single gatefolds) that no, each belongs to Raccoon, or the two Moles, or Fox, or Bunny, or another housemate. The views of Reindeer awkwardly sprawled atop or wedged into hammocks or different types of too-small or otherwise unsuitable bedsteads are positively chuckleworthy, and more-acute viewers can predict who will be occupying each bed before the flap is lifted by noting which animal has disappeared from Bijsterbosch’s shrinking cast of sleepy onlookers. The bright, matte colors are eye-catching, offering just the right balance of busyness to help guide board-book readers into more-complicated compositions. Reindeer arrives at last at a bed that would be perfect but is already occupied by an owl. Her dismay is short-lived, as the owl wakes up and flies off hooting, “I sleep during the day. Now it is your turn.” Ahh, sweet relief at last! “We all sleep best,” the simply phrased narrative concludes, “in our own bed.”

Truer words…capping a less-contentious alternative to Candace Fleming’s Go Sleep in Your Own Bed!, illustrated by Lori Nichols (2017). (Picture book/novelty. 2-5)

Pub Date: April 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-60537-387-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Clavis

Review Posted Online: March 27, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2018

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Parents of toddlers starting school or day care should seek separation-anxiety remedies elsewhere, and fans of the original...

A KISSING HAND FOR CHESTER RACCOON

From the Kissing Hand series

A sweetened, condensed version of the best-selling picture book, The Kissing Hand.

As in the original, Chester Raccoon is nervous about attending Owl’s night school (raccoons are nocturnal). His mom kisses him on the paw and reminds him, “With a Kissing Hand… / We’ll never be apart.” The text boils the story down to its key elements, causing this version to feel rushed. Gone is the list of fun things Chester will get to do at school. Fans of the original may be disappointed that this board edition uses a different illustrator. Gibson’s work is equally sentimental, but her renderings are stiff and flat in comparison to the watercolors of Harper and Leak. Very young readers will probably not understand that Owl’s tree, filled with opossums, a squirrel, a chipmunk and others, is supposed to be a school.

Parents of toddlers starting school or day care should seek separation-anxiety remedies elsewhere, and fans of the original shouldn’t look to this version as replacement for their page-worn copies. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: April 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-933718-77-4

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Tanglewood Publishing

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

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A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an...

I AM A BIG BROTHER

A little boy exults in his new role as big brother.

Rhyming text describes the arrival of a new baby and all of the big brother’s rewarding new duties. He gets to help with feedings, diaper changes, playtime, bathtime, and naptime. Though the rhyming couplets can sometimes feel a bit forced and awkward, the sentiment is sweet, as the focus here never veers from the excitement and love a little boy feels for his tiny new sibling. The charming, uncluttered illustrations convincingly depict the growing bond between this fair-skinned, rosy-cheeked, smiling pair of boys. In the final pages, the parents, heretofore kept mostly out of view, are pictured holding the children. The accompanying text reads: “Mommy, Daddy, baby, me. / We love each other—a family!” In companion volume I Am a Big Sister, the little boy is replaced with a little girl with bows in her hair. Some of the colors and patterns in the illustrations are slightly altered, but it is essentially the same title.

A good choice for caregivers looking for a positive, uncomplicated introduction to a new baby that focuses on everything an older sibling can do to help. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 27, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-68886-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

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