Cumulative text builds up to a sweet goodnight in this bedtime book.
Although the first-person text doesn’t specify race, ethnicity, or gender, the illustrations depict a light-skinned family composed of Mom, Dad, and their narrator child, all three with dark hair and eyes (though Dad’s complexion is a bit darker than the others’). A little dog named Jasper appears as well as the story begins with the family around the table anticipating day’s end. The family’s routine—washing dinner dishes, bathtime, pajamas, tooth-brushing, bedtime reading, and, finally, hugs good night—builds in the text to create a sense of stability and comfort, each iteration adding one element to the preceding list and closing with the titular refrain until the very end. Clearly this child is well-loved and cared for, knowing what to expect as one part of the routine gives way to another. Castillo’s watercolor-and-ink illustrations augment the text’s comfortable feeling, her trademark thick, smudgy outlines visually hugging each character. The pictures look downright magical at book’s end when luminous wallpaper—a rich blue with golden stars and crescent moons—fills up the background of cozy closing images, creating interior starry splendor.
A very good goodnight book. (Picture book. 3-5)