"GOOD NIGHT, MONKEY BOY" by Jarrett J. Krosoczka


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You'll know the type, and here he is especially winning: a little boy who knows all the tricks to prolong the act of going to bed. Decked out in his monkey pj's, the boy sidles off into the kitchen to grab a banana as soon as the call goes up for bedtime. "Sorry, no bananas before bedtime, Monkey Boy," says his mother—the single sentence splashed across the page in big type that has the effect of whitewash—as she ushers him to the bathroom for some tooth-brushing. Monkey Boy is about to apply the toothpaste to his fiery mop of red hair when his mother intervenes and points him toward the bath, where he proceeds to turn the shower curtain bar into a piece of gymnastic equipment. Artful perspectives place mom as a presence, large and looming, even if it's only her hand, but the child is always the center of each spread, in fact mom's head and face are never seen. Finally, it's into bed and ready for a story . . . hey, where'd that banana come from? " 'Good night, Monkey Boy. I love you, too, Monkey Boy.' " And sure as the sun is going to rise, once mom is gone, out comes the flashlight and the half-eaten banana. Despite the up-tempo delivery, Krosoczka'a story can be read as a bedtime tale—if not exactly a lullaby—for the voluptuous colors and the quilt-deep qualities of the full-bleed, double-paged spreads work like a hearty meal on the wakefulness of young readers. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: June 12th, 2001
ISBN: 0440417988
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Knopf