It’s not all DJ dance parties and hot-fudge fountains when parents stay up late…or is it?
Why are parents so dead set on getting their children to bed? Because of the wild parties they throw every night, obviously! So imagines Joseph, and tonight the freckled white boy is going to crack the code of silence surrounding his parents’ nighttime high jinks. Fantasizing about the delectable desserts, pirate puppet shows, and ninja acrobatics that must take place, he takes every precaution to avoid detection in pursuit of the truth. Yet what he finds at the bottom of the stairs shocks him. They don’t do anything at all! Or…is that just what they want him to believe? There is obvious pleasure to be had from Joseph’s far-reaching fantasies and their increasingly cockamamie absurdity (the “tuba mariachi marching band” is a particularly nice touch). Illustrator Wake’s digital art works in hints of the parents’ true activities, rewarding sharp-eyed spotters; while Joseph’s parents are also white, some of the other figures in Joseph’s fantasies are people of color.
Forget staying up to wait for Santa Claus. After reading this, kids will clamor to investigate someone a little closer to home. (Picture book. 4-7)