A short, charming bedtime book for children that stresses the positive power of dreams.

Dream-O-Doodle

A number of dream landscapes inspire the imaginations of a girl and a boy as they drop off to sleep.

This debut picture book begins with two small children as they climb into their separate beds at the end of the day. But, as the text announces, “that’s where the adventure really starts.” The pages that follow present 11 different dream scenarios, including animals, robots, dinosaurs, fairy tales, cars and planes, and magic and monsters. The work describes each topic in a four-line stanza of verse simple and entertaining enough to be read to a 3-year-old, yet challenging enough to provide interest to 6-year-olds puzzling out words on their own. For example, the “Animals” section promises: “A jungle, an ocean, savannah, and woods / Will make an explorer of you. /You'll mingle with creatures amazing and mighty, / And travel the world through and through.” The “Dinosaurs” segment observes: “Dinosaurs are awesome! / They’re mighty, big, and strong! / But would you really like to meet one? / ‘No, thanks—we might not get along.’ ” And “Cars” offers youngsters: “Exciting, speedy, fabulous cars— / You choose whichever you please, / And race into your dreamy world, / Winning the trophy with ease.” Roberts’ vivid illustrations provide engaging details without becoming too busy. Taylor’s choice of dream subjects covers many areas of perennial interest to children, and though one could wish for more episodes and diverse characters, the length is appropriate for bedtime-story reading. And the idea of sending children off to sleep with an upbeat suggestion of the vast possibilities of the dream world is original and empowering. But the book’s title is a bit puzzling, and the lackluster cover fails to do justice to the colorful pages within. Parents trying to avoid weapon play may be displeased by a gun-toting robot who says “B.L.A.S.T,” and the “Fairy Tales” page offers gender stereotypes, with the boys as knights and the girls as princesses. But most of the dreams give both boys and girls active roles, and the overall effect remains captivating and fun.

A short, charming bedtime book for children that stresses the positive power of dreams.

Pub Date: July 21, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4602-9570-0

Page Count: -

Publisher: FriesenPress

Review Posted Online: Oct. 6, 2016

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MORNING GIRL

Like the quiet lap of waves on the sand, the alternating introspections of two Bahamian island children in 1492. Morning Girl and her brother Star Boy are very different: she loves the hush of pre-dawn while he revels in night skies, noise, wind. In many ways they are antagonists, each too young and subjective to understand the other's perspective—in contrast to their mother's appreciation for her brother. In the course of these taut chapters concerning such pivotal events as their mother's losing a child, the arrival of a hurricane, or Star Boy's earning the right to his adult name, they grow closer. In the last, Morning Girl greets— with cordial innocence—a boat full of visitors, unaware that her beautifully balanced and textured life is about to be catalogued as ``very poor in everything,'' her island conquered by Europeans. This paradise is so intensely and believably imagined that the epilogue, quoted from Columbus's diary, sickens with its ominous significance. Subtly, Dorris draws parallels between the timeless chafings of sibs set on changing each other's temperaments and the intrusions of states questing new territory. Saddening, compelling—a novel to be cherished for its compassion and humanity. (Fiction. 8+)

Pub Date: Sept. 14, 1992

ISBN: 1-56282-284-5

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1992

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The book is a cute, but rather standard offering from Avi (Tom, Babette, and Simon, p. 776, etc.).

POPPY

From the Poppy series , Vol. 3

An adolescent mouse named Poppy is off on a romantic tryst with her rebel boyfriend when they are attacked by Mr. Ocax, the owl who rules over the area.

He kills the boyfriend, but Poppy escapes and Mr. Ocax vows to catch her. Mr. Ocax has convinced all the mice that he is their protector when, in fact, he preys on them mercilessly. When the mice ask his permission to move to a new house, he refuses, blaming Poppy for his decision. Poppy suspects that there is another reason Mr. Ocax doesn't want them to move and investigates to clear her name. With the help of a prickly old porcupine and her quick wits, Poppy defeats her nemesis and her own fears, saving her family in the bargain. 

The book is a cute, but rather standard offering from Avi (Tom, Babette, and Simon, p. 776, etc.). (Fiction. 9-11)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-531-09483-9

Page Count: 147

Publisher: Orchard

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 1995

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