From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 2—This cumulative tale begins on a cold, dark night when Momma and Poppa are sound asleep and snoring. The door squeaks as Evie appears, and the bed creaks as she bounces in. Ivy comes next, followed by Mo, while the door squeaks and the bed creaks. The children drape themselves over and around their parents' extra-large heads. Thunder booms and Fred the dog enters with toenails clicking and clacking. Poppa sleeps undisturbed through the children's entrances, but he wakes when the dog barks. "Up Poppa popped./Poppa cried, 'Stop!/There's no more room for Fred in the bed.'" The final spread shows the family—and Fred—asleep on a broken bed, as the floor cracks and creaks. The full-color illustrations are done in acrylic gouache. The cartoon style is a suitable match for the humorous text, which is loaded with sounds. Frequent repetition and rhyming words make this a good choice for emergent readers. Pair this story with Audrey and Don Wood's The Napping House
(Houghton, 1984) for a laugh-filled storytime.—Mary Jean Smith, Southside Elementary School, Lebanon, TN
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The increasingly crowded bed—at nighttime or nap time—is by now a standard picture-book plotline. Fresh takes on the subject are hard to come by, but Root manages to make it feel new by punctuating the story with the sounds of impending disaster. Not only does the bed frame go “creak” each time a youngster climbs onto the mattress with Mom and Dad but the door goes “squeak,” the thunder goes “boom,” and the dog’s paws go “clickety-clackity.” Meanwhile, Poppa snores and makes other humorous nighttime noises like “snark” and “snurkle.” The economy of the story line is paralleled by gouache illustrations (done predominately in a saturated aqua blue and golden-moonlight yellow) that reinforce the bed-centered tale but also pull in and zoom out on its inhabitants for different perspectives. The lantern-jawed, snub-nosed family is cartoon cute, making for a perfect storytime read. Preschool-Kindergarten. --Karen Cruze