Sweet dreams, big kid.



From the Big Kid Power series

A little book about a big step in becoming a big kid.

The latest installment in van Lieshout’s Big Kid Power series offers encouragement for young readers making the transition from sleeping in a crib to sleeping in a “big bed.” The first-person narration (from the child’s perspective) describes how when they were little “I slept a lot…. And I slept anywhere.” The digitally created illustrations depict a two-parent family with brown skin and tightly curled black hair, the baby snoozing in a snuggly, a car seat, a stroller, and a crib—but now, “BIG KIDS SLEEP IN A BIG BED!” The narrator describes a bedtime routine that could take place with any sleeping arrangement. It includes books, kisses and hugs from caregivers, and snuggling with a “lovey.” The text then details the child’s emotional adjustment to sleeping in a big bed, with a central spread depicting their fears upon waking up in the middle of the night: “This bed is VERY BIG! Where am I? Where is my crib? What if my lovey falls out?” These worries are quickly assuaged with the next page turn, not by having parents reappear to soothe their little one, but with the child snuggling their “lovey” as they “cuddle up under the blankets…and go back to sleep.” While this independent, easy resolution may seem unrealistic to some, it offers an aspirational turn toward independence for young readers who might struggle in making this transition.

Sweet dreams, big kid. (Picture book. 1-3)

Pub Date: March 13, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4521-6290-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Chronicle

Review Posted Online: Feb. 4, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2018

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If the point is to help children understand and accept their feelings, this effort is a failure. If the point is to sell...


From the Pout-Pout Fish series

The Pout-Pout Fish brand expands.

None of the fish in this sea look like anything living outside the cartoon-cute world of Pout-Pout Fish, but that's just the beginning of the problems with this board-book addition to the franchise. The Pout-Pout Fish on the cover and every page of this offering doesn't look pouty at all. Slightly bemused, a bit surprised, maybe—but definitely not pouty. In fact, all of the cartoony creatures swimming in this fantasy sea share the same bug-eyed, slightly kissy-face expression. The rhyming message is that there are many ways to share it—a wave, a smile, holding hands (or fins), making silly faces, a hug, or a kiss—but there’s only one thing to call it: love. What is disturbing is that Mr. Fish seems to have only one choice—to accept love however it is offered. Giving children (or little fish) permission to trust their own feelings might be a more appropriate message.

If the point is to help children understand and accept their feelings, this effort is a failure. If the point is to sell Pout-Pout product, it might succeed. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Dec. 15, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-374-30190-3

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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A terrific resource for fans of Daniel Tiger and newcomers alike.


From the Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood series

Animated PBS character Daniel Tiger helps readers tell time.

Mr. Rogers–like (explicitly—the show is produced by the Fred Rogers Co.), Daniel Tiger welcomes his neighbors, inviting them to spend the day with him and learn to use a clock along the way. A large clock face with movable hands is accessible through a large, die-cut circle in the upper-right corner of each double-page spread. The hands click and clack as they’re moved around the clock’s face, and the sound is peculiarly satisfying. Each hand has a different noise, helping children to differentiate between the two. Daniel and his family and friends do lots of things throughout the day, including eating breakfast, going to school, running errands, eating dinner, and going to bed. The illustrations emulate the show’s rounded, calmly colored style. Fans of the television show will be entranced. Daniel’s constant engagement with readers will spawn busy interaction, and the fact that this book covers a whole day makes it an excellent read right before bed.

A terrific resource for fans of Daniel Tiger and newcomers alike. (Board book. 2-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 30, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4814-6934-0

Page Count: 14

Publisher: Simon Spotlight

Review Posted Online: Aug. 30, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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