Kirkus Reviews QR Code
WHO’S YAWNING? by David Bedford

WHO’S YAWNING?

By David Bedford (Author) , Leonie Worthington (Illustrator)

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: July 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-921272-48-6
Publisher: Little Hare/Trafalgar

Bright yellow endpapers enclose this lift-the-flap book in which a questioning pachyderm asks, “Who’s yawning?” The format is an acknowledged child-pleaser, but there is a fatal flaw to the execution here. If a cat was yawning, it would not say “Miaa-aa-oo-www!” If a horse was yawning, it would not say “Nnn-ee-iii-gh!” That is speaking or making a sound. A yawn takes in air and lets it out and pretty much sounds and looks alike for animals and humans, and any child who’s spent time with a pet already knows this. This bedtime story eventually finds all the animals awake and the elephant sleeping with a “SSSSSShhh!” Worthington’s illustrations are bright and include clues around the flap to guess the animal underneath, although the flap edge is not always well-integrated into the picture beneath, resulting in some oddly chopped-off limbs and leaves. This overtly appealing concept book gives young readers the repetition they love, the fun of a guessing-game and a bedtime plot, but the chosen verb “yawning” makes all the animal noises a cacophony of errors. (Picture book. 3-5)