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28 GOOD NIGHT STORIES by Brigitte Weninger


edited by & illustrated by & translated by

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: June 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-698-40081-8
Publisher: Minedition/Penguin

This anthology is neatly tied together with a knot of friendship between a guardian-angel trainee and an old bear. The two take turns sharing one story each night until the next full moon and the angel’s big test. In the end, the bear learns the secret word that the angel has whispered in the ear of a child each night: “Grow.” That is the central theme of each story, whether it be physical, emotional or intellectual growth. While the concept is sweet and the message meaningful (if forced at times), several stories lack the spark that would bring them to life. Tharlet’s charming artwork employs a soft palette that lends to the somnolent feel of the stories, depicting the most cogent details of each. The affection between the two friends is easily apparent, while the adorable little angel’s almost hopeless clumsiness will have readers rooting for his final success. A mixed result, but there are lessons to be learned here, and the illustrations are worth a look. (Picture book/anthology. 3-7)