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NIGHT SHIFT by Jessie Hartland Kirkus Star


by Jessie Hartland & illustrated by Jessie Hartland

Age Range: 5 - 7

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-1-59990-025-4
Publisher: Bloomsbury

Hartland offers an eye-opener for young urbanites who think that the world goes to sleep when they do. Capping each spread with a page-turning question (“What is that swishing noise outside?”), she introduces a diverse cast of night workers, from a street sweeper and road workers to store window dressers, bridge painters and an all-night DJ. Her postmodern city scenes, done in a style reminiscent of Maira Kalman’s, add both visual links and other night owls, including a turbaned taxi driver, a car full of raccoons checking out a garbage can, a dogwalker and a goodly number of cats. At shift’s end, all (except for the raccoons) gather convivially around the counter of (what else?) the 24-hour café for breakfast. The admixture of less familiar occupations sets this cheery nocturnal excursion apart from others of the ilk, such as Monica Wellington’s Night City (1998) and Patricia Grossman’s Night Ones (1991). (Picture book. 5-7)