Can this quirky pair of friends stay up all night?
Ironic counterpoint abounds in this humorous picture book, which sees the eponymous characters rejecting typical bedtime-book activities and accoutrements through speech-balloon text, as all the while humorous, expressive, digital illustrations doggedly present them. For example, “There is no room for toothbrushing and bath time in this book” exclaims Penguin, but a prior picture on the dedication page shows them brushing their teeth after tracking bathwater across the floor to the sink. Yes, the anthropomorphic bird and crustacean have teeth, and that’s just one of the silly elements of this very silly anti-bedtime book. They also declare “there is nothing about big soft beds” in the book even as they jump on just such a bed. In a shift away from irony, they rejoice when fireworks suddenly appear to bolster their anti-bedtime stance. This moment instigates a series of adventures for the pair and an increasingly large group of sidekicks, all resisting sleep as they swing from vines, fly in hot air balloons, and so on. After introducing a “Uni-Hippo” (because, why not?), they insist, “One thing this book will never do is make you tired….This book will never make you yawn,” as the pictures once again contradict the text, depicting the once-boisterous animals yawning hugely and heading to bed.
A definite do for bedtime. (Picture book. 3-7)