From School Library Journal
PreSchool-K–This bouncy bedtime tale describes how various barnyard creatures get ready to rest, hour by hour. First, the mother hens put their little ones in the bath, "So when it is six, every chick boy and girlie,/Is snug in the coop. Chicken bedtime is early!" At seven, it's time for the cows and the sheep to hit the hay, followed by bunnies at eight, fish at nine, and so on. Several hamsters settle down in their cage to take a nap at eleven, but are up an hour later for "a brisk midnight jog on the wheel." After the rooster crows at dawn, all of the sleepers awaken, and the story ends with a young boy, still in bed, taking a morning stretch. Although some of the rhymes are a bit forced ("It's time for each one of the/bun-dads and mommies,/To put their young rabbits/in footy pajamies"), the language has a comfortable, informal tone and moves along at a brisk pace. The acrylic paintings create a pleasing balance of colorful textures and simple lines. The cartoon animals are gracefully arranged across each spread, and the background hues grow gradually deeper to accentuate the evening darkness. An additional purchase where bedtime books are popular.–Joy Fleishhacker, School Library Journal
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*Starred Review* PreS. "From chickens to hamsters, from rabbits to sheep. Sooner or later we all need to sleep," begins this charming countdown to bedtime in a barnyard. At five o'clock, chicks take their baths and snuggle into their coop. At eight, "bun-dads and mommies . . . put their young rabbits in footy pajamies." Each hour brings bedtime for a new animal. At last, only the rowdy hamsters are still playing. Then morning comes, and the rooster rises, followed by all the other animals, including "YOU." Children will delight in recognizing the familiar sleepy-time routines in Perl's infectious, bouncing rhymes: the bunnies want the same story, even though "they've all heard it eighteen times before"; the fish "sons and daughters" all want "just one more glass of water." Bates' acrylic paintings--in rich hues, textures, and appealingly simplified shapes--capture the delicious chaos and tumble of toddler bedtime and cast the deep night, when everyone is asleep, as reassuring, safe, and peaceful. Cropped to varying sizes and nicely positioned with several images per page, the art will give children plenty to notice and point to. Together, the words and pictures make a clever, winning offering that soars above other all-too-common bedtime books. Gillian EngbergCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved