A British stop-motion animated series makes the jump across the pond to print.
The TV series, originally broadcast from 1969 to 1972, was resurrected in 2015. The mouselike Clangers live on a planet in outer space also inhabited by mother and baby Soup Dragons and egg-shaped froglets and overseen by Iron Chicken, an amalgamation of washers, nuts, bolts, and other metal parts. (Readers may be reminded of Fraggle Rock.) The Clangers themselves are pink knit creations differentiated by size and by vest and hair color. In this tale, the youngest Clanger, Tiny, “dons her radio hat and makes her nightly bedtime call to Iron Chicken,” asking for her lullaby. (The iron hat looks like a parody of paranoiac headgear.) But something is wrong with the hat tonight, and Tiny can’t sleep without her lullaby. What follows is her attempt to get someone to sing to her, though the quest goes on far too long and inconsistencies crop up—brother Small was asleep but then suddenly is not. In the end, the froglets, Baby Soup Dragon, and Small all convince Tiny that she should sing to them, and the lullaby works like a charm on them all, Tiny included.
Readers unfamiliar with the TV series may be left scratching their heads, and even for those who are fans, Tiny’s dilemma feels overlong. (Picture book. 3-6)