Boo! Baa, La La La! (Sandra Boynton)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Boo! Baa, La La La! by Sandra Boynton, a Halloween companion board book to Boynton’s classic Moo, Baa, La La La!

On Halloween, the spotted cow from Moo, Baa, La La La! likes to mix things up. Instead of saying “moo”, she likes to try a new word: “boo!”. She calls her “boo” out into the night, only to be met with a “baa” from an unseen animal. After another call and response that results in a bevy of animal noises, the cow goes off in search of the source of the mysterious sounds. What she finds is a collection of barnyard friends to celebrate Halloween with.

Cute but unsatisfying. The simple narrative offers a strong beginning, even teasing an interactive element that is never fully explored, but then quickly sort of meanders to a puzzling and underwhelming conclusion. It’s Boynton, so the text is bouncy and fun to read aloud of course, but the plot lacked the charm of other Boynton favorites, including the original (the delightful performing pigs, one of the best features of Moo, Baa, La La La! barely even make an appearance, being inserted as a cameo to offer the closing line). The illustrations are cute, the read is quick, and JJ did enjoy the beginning and the Halloween elements, so it is worth a look, especially for fans of Boynton. But there are other Halloween board books out there that, frankly, do the format better. Still, if you’re looking for a quick and easy, if slightly superficial, spooky season read, this will do. Baby Bookworm approved.

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

Good Night, Good Night (Sandra Boynton)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Good Night, Good Night by Sandra Boynton, the original, longer version of the author/illustrator’s massively popular The Going To Bed Book.

After nearly 40 years in circulation, The Going To Bed Book gets an expansion based on Boynton’s original 1985 version, with redrawn illustrations to accompany the evergreen bedtime tale’s new layout. Fans of the story will enjoy the familiar rhyming text as it follows a motley group of animals at sea as they prepare for bedtime – brushing teeth, taking a bath, putting on jammies, and even working in a spot of exercise to get out that last minute energy. New scenes include cuddling into bed and a performance by two bunnies of a jaunty song about dreams of playing in the mud (including lyrics and musical notation). At last, the animals cut the lights and let the ocean gently rock them to sleep.

For nearly the entire first two years of JJ’s life, her bedtime routine included reading The Going To Bed Book, a perfectly paced and executed book that readers have been enjoying for decades. So naturally, we were excited to read this expanded version, and we weren’t disappointed! Boynton’s illustrations include all the fun and familiar visuals of the original, spaced out and with additional details to spot but otherwise effortlessly merging old with new. The addition of the song changes the story’s rhythm a bit, but JJ enjoyed the silly, simple tune immensely. Both versions are delightful in their own way, and present an opportunity to caregivers who can start with the board book version for very little bookworms, then introduce the expanded version as they grow. Overall, this was a treat – a fresh and fun new version of an undisputed classic. Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

The Going To Bed Book (Sandra Boynton)


Summer Reading Day 9: due to some SERIOUS toothy pain, Ms. JJ was not feeling storytime. However, we did manage to sneak in our book of the day at bedtime. We’ve been reading Sandra Boynton’s The Going To Bed Book to JJ nearly every night since she was 3 months as part of her bedtime routine. It’s easy to read, just the right length, and the illustrations are very cute.

(This was one of our original Instagram posts, back before we realized this was going to be a blog!)