Age Range: 3 - 7
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From readers’ early glimpses of Zachary, the red-haired, bespectacled moppet hero of this story, standing on the edge of an orange toilet seat in his acid green jammies, they’ll know this is no ordinary tale. Zachary finds two zebras and a shaggy dog drinking from the birdbath quite early one Saturday morning, and a white-bearded codger out front trying to start his truck. The codger is the Dream Collector, who gathers folks’ dreams before dawn each day to keep them from becoming real when the sunlight touches them. Zachary brings him tools and tries to round up the stray dreams; zebras, pirates, a knight, and a dragon are loaded into the truck. The Dream Collector gets it started just in time—but allows the dream-conjured shaggy dog, with “eyes like chocolate kisses” to stay and become Zachary’s real dog. Children might find the thought of dreams becoming real either delightful or creepy, but it is hard not to be charmed by the illustrations, with their deep palette of greens, reds, and blues; the fully realized shapes of Zachary and the Dream Collector and the truck are reassuring next to the more evanescent forms of the dragon and the pirates. As Zachary bounds up to his parents’ bedroom with the dog in tow, young readers will have a fine time thinking about what happens next. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: March 1st, 1999
ISBN: 1-55074-437-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Kids Can
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 1999