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Sleepyhead Cute But Not Outstanding Bedtime Book

Reviewing: Karma Wilson And John Segal Sleepyhead  |  Rating:
Joan Young By Joan Young on
Badge: Editor | Level: 34 | Children & Parenting Expertise:
Sleepyhead Cover

Sleepyhead is another small paperback that was free on boxes of Cheerios as a promotion for other books in the Young Reader series by Simon and Schuster. It’s bilingual- in both English and Spanish. This book is cute, although I wouldn’t call it outstanding.

The story line is the all-too-familiar difficulty of getting a child to finally give up the bedtime routine and go to sleep. For 28 pages we hear all the usual “One more hug, one more drink, ” etc, etc. until the sleepyhead finally falls asleep.

The book is paperback, 5x7 inches, with a stapled spine.

It’s presented in simple rhymes, which adds to the charm. An example is, “We’ve hugged our hugs, the prayers are said. Go to sleep. It’s time for bed.” I don’t know Spanish well enough to tell if it rhymes in that language, but from looking at the words, I’d say, not as well.

The pictures are watercolors in a primitive style. Although they are cute, a number of the pages have very small pictures of a cat holding a teddy bear in various poses. I think the cat is actually the sleepyhead. The cover blurb describes the illustrations as “having great whimsy.” I’d call it moderate whimsy. I like the pages where the picture is larger and covers the page. I’m not so crazy about the multiple small ones. Since this book is going to be enjoyed most by very small children, I think the larger pictures are better.

I have somewhat mixed feelings about the cuteness of a book that might seem to promote the idea that the whole stretching out of bedtime is ok. I was pretty much a no-nonsense parent. I probably would not have found it very helpful to read a book that normalized a constant problem. (OK, we all know it happens, but why celebrate it?)

The book is meant to entice parents into buying others in the series. Some of those titles by Karma Wilson and John Segal are Bear Snores On, Where is Home, Little Pip?, Carrot Soup, and Alistair and Kip's Great Adventure. .