Let’s Get Sleepy! (Tony Cliff)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Let’s Get Sleepy! by Tony Cliff, a delightfully wild seek-and-find.

Waking up early and bouncing out of bed with excitement, orange kitten Richard is ready to start his day. One of a large litter of siblings, Richard begins the morning by wondering where Sleepy, the wee prince of the night (embodied by a regally-outfitted mouse), has gone off too. Gathering his pack of feline family and friends, Richard spills out the door with the cry: “LET’S GET SLEEPY!”. Exploring their busy town through parades, mountaintops, underground caves, the beach, and even the surface of the moon, the gaggle of kitties searches high and low for Sleepy… to no avail. Trudging home, Richard recounts his busy day to his mother as she readies her kids for bed. Tucking the kitty in, Mom assures Richard that after a full day like his, he needn’t search too hard for Sleepy – she has a feeling that Sleepy will find him soon enough.

Adorable, interactive fun. While the light and bouncy rhyming text and highly enjoyable refrain of this title make for a delightful read-aloud, its magic is in its incredibly charming and detailed illustrations. Richard and his gang of kittens are each unique and winsome, and a helpful guide on the back cover helps readers distinguish them by name and appearance. But it’s the jaw-dropping crowd scenes that are the star of the show, each creating a Where’s Waldo-like seek-and-find where both the reader and the kittens can search for the elusive Sleepy (with plenty of visual treats and gags to entertain as they do). This makes the length as much or little as your little bookworm wants; JJ sat comfortably for the read-through, and was eager to return to each art spread for closer examination. This one is sure to delight, and we recommend it – Baby Bookworm approved!

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

Twenty Yawns (Jane Smiley)

Hello, everyone! Today, we read Twenty Yawns, written by Jane Smiley and illustrated by Lauren Castillo. This is a sweet bedtime story about the sometimes-spooky time right before bed.

Lucy and her parents spend all day playing at the beach, and when they all get home, they’re all very tired. Lucy’s mom begins to read her a bedtime story, but falls asleep before it’s through. Lucy is left alone in the silvery time of early night, and feels a bit spooked. She goes to find her teddy bear, Molasses, and after finding her father asleep as well, sees that all her stuffed animal friends are feeling a bit lonely and unnerved as well. As she takes care of them, she finds the courage and comfort she needs by snuggling into bed with all her plushies until everyone is yawning and drifting off to sleep.

This was a cute book with a gentle sort of magic to it. It’s definitely a time of night that most remember from childhood: when everyone was asleep but you. The illustrations are adorable, and the titular twenty yawns are sprinkled throughout the book so that readers can find and count them. The length is fine for baby bookworms, and we enjoyed it. Baby Bookworm approved!