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CAN'T SLEEP WITHOUT SHEEP by Susanna Leonard Hill


by Susanna Leonard Hill & illustrated by Mike Wohnoutka

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-8027-2066-5
Publisher: Walker

When Ava’s busy mind won’t let her fall asleep, her mother tells her to try counting sheep, marking the last moment of convention in Hill and Wohnoutka’s refreshing bedtime story. Alas, as she counts sheep jumping over a fence, Ava’s mind is so busy with “ideas and questions, thoughts of today, and plans for tomorrow” that the sheep themselves become exhausted and decide to quit, leaving Ava wondering how she will ever get to sleep. Being compassionate, if pooped, the sheep promise to find a replacement. A veritable menagerie of animals on following pages attempt to jump over the fence and send Ava into dreamland, but horses are too distracting, pigs too slow, chickens too ridiculous and “the cows were a complete disaster.” The acrylic illustrations make the most of the foolishness, placing the animals in ever-more-ridiculous situations. After meeting failure with hippos, buffalo and others, Ava charms the sheep with her appreciation of their efforts, and they return to work. “You can count on us,” they assure her, concluding a gently humorous book that families will undoubtedly come to count on as well. (Picture book. 3-5)