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10 Minutes till Bedtime Hardcover – September 28, 1998


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 2 - 6 years
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Putnam Juvenile (September 28, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039923103X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399231032
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 9.7 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (88 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #302,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"Ten minutes till bedtime!" Father announces from behind his newspaper. Out a picture window, his son and his son's pet hamster can see a hamster family (with kids numbered 1 to 10) approaching the house. "All aboard!" shouts the boy's prized pet, as his puzzled owner opens the door and the hamster tourists are loaded onto the special trolley. What the humans at 1 Hoppin Place don't know is that their cherished family pet has advertised on the Web (www.hamstertours.com) for a "10-Minute Bedtime Tour," and the hordes have only just begun to descend.

"Nine minutes till bedtime," Father insists, oblivious to the burgeoning hamster parade. At the 8-minute marker, the hamsters and the boy are in the kitchen for a pre-bedtime snack. One little guy is standing on top of a fruit bowl, lowering a cherry cluster with a string and paper clip. Hamster number 10 is trying to feed an animal cracker to the boy's fuzzy bedroom slipper. "Seven minutes till bedtime!" reminds Father as creative tooth-brushing progresses. But what's this? It's the 5-minute countdown marker, and the faint light of hamster headlights appears out the window. More tourists are on their way! Buses, trucks, taxis, and golf carts full of rodents are driving up the sidewalk! Hilarious hamster hijinks ensue. If you're not seeing the appeal here, it's like this: each spread is turbocharged with dozens of winsome, adorable details that will keep youngsters giggling and entranced--and counting to 10--time after time. Peggy Rathmann, author of the Caldecott Medal-winning Officer Buckle and Gloria, offers readers a rollicking rodent romp that ends with a goodnight kiss and many, many closed eyelids. (Click to see a sample spread. Copyright © 1998 Peggy Rathmann, published by Putnam Books, a division of Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers.) (Ages 2 to 8) --Karin Snelson

From Publishers Weekly

Caldecott Medalist Rathmann (Officer Buckle and Gloria) builds a captivating series of mini-plots from a basic countdown premise with few words and abundant action. A child?who could be a girl or boy?plays with an energetic hamster family with just 10 minutes to go before she's tucked into bed. As the child's father idly reads the newspaper and clocks the passing time ("9 minutes till bedtime"), a rotund hamster in a blue conductor's uniform echoes each announcement with a tiny megaphone. Meanwhile, the hamster parents and their 10 active offspring, distinguishable by numbered yellow-and-red striped jerseys, frolic throughout the house. Rathmann endows each with a distinctive personality: Numbers 3 and 4 are twins, 8 shows only its rear end and stroller-bound toddler 10 declares "eat" and "more!" After additional golden-brown rodents arrive (in Goodnight Gorilla fashion) at the front door (raising the count to well above 50), the child reads this very book to a vast audience, takes a bath surrounded by furry beachgoers (and lotion, ants and sunglasses galore), then hurries through other pre-bed rituals before a final cry of "Bedtime!" Every engrossing illustration provides an exercise in numerals and Where's Waldo?-style concentration; die-hard fans will not only count Gorilla among the throngs, but Officer Buckle opens and closes the show, and young readers will note Rathmann's return to Napville for this nocturnal adventure. If Rathmann has her way, young slumberers will be counting hamsters, not sheep, as they drift off to sleep. Ages 2-6.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

"Caldecott-medalist Peggy Rathmann was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, and grew up in the suburbs with two brothers and two sisters.
""In the summer we lolled in plastic wading pools guzzling Kool-Aid. In the winter we sculpted giant snow animals. It was a good life.""
Ms. Rathmann graduated from Mounds View High School in New Brighton, Minnesota, then attended colleges everywhere, changing her major repeatedly. She eventually earned a B.A. in psychology from the University of Minnesota.
""I wanted to teach sign language to gorillas, but after taking a class in signing, I realized what I'd rather do was draw pictures of gorillas.""
Ms. Rathmann studied commercial art at the American Academy in Chicago, fine art at the Atelier Lack in Minneapolis, and children's-book writing and illustration at the Otis Parsons School of Design in Los Angeles.
""I spent the first three weeks of my writing class at Otis Parsons filching characters from my classmates' stories. Finally, the teacher convinced me that even a beginning writer can create an original character if the character is driven by the writer's most secret weirdness. Eureka! A little girl with a passion for plagiarism! I didn't want anyone to know it was me, so I made the character look like my sister.""
The resulting book, Ruby the Copycat, earned Ms. Rathmann the ""Most Promising New Author"" distinction in Publishers Weekly's 1991 annual Cuffie Awards. In 1992 she illustrated Bootsie Barker Bites for Barbara Bottner, her teacher at Otis Parsons.
A homework assignment produced an almost wordless story, Good Night, Gorilla, inspired by a childhood memory.
""When I was little, the highlight of the summer was running barefoot through the grass, in the dark, screaming. We played kick-the-can, and three-times-around-the-house, and sometimes we just stood staring into other people's picture windows, wondering what it would be like to go home to someone else's house.""
That story, however, was only nineteen pages long, and everyone agreed that the ending was a dud. Two years and ten endings later, Good Night, Gorilla was published and recognized as an ALA Notable Children's Book for 1994.
The recipient of the 1996 Caldecott Medal, Officer Buckle and Gloria, is the story of a school safety officer upstaged by his canine partner.
""We have a videotape of my mother chatting in the dining room while, unnoticed by her or the cameraman, the dog is licking every poached egg on the buffet. The next scene shows the whole family at the breakfast table, complimenting my mother on the delicious poached eggs. The dog, of course, is pretending not to know what a poached egg is. The first time we watched that tape we were so shocked, we couldn't stop laughing. I suspect that videotape had a big influence on my choice of subject matter.""
Ms. Rathmann lives and works in San Francisco, in an apartment she shares with her husband, John Wick, and a very funny bunch of ants.
"

Customer Reviews

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My children adore this book, so we've read it many, many times.
Jane Healy
This is a really fun book, and the highlight of it is the incredible detail in the illustrations.
Sean P. Logue
My 6 year old niece loved to "read" this book to her 2 year old cousin.
E. Wygant

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Jane Healy on January 21, 2004
Format: Board book
My children adore this book, so we've read it many, many times. They still squeal with delight and laughter. There is so much detail, that you can't help but discover something new with each reading (keeping it entertaining for mom and dad as well as Junior). My one recommendation is that you buy the hardcover version versus the board book. We have both. The board book lacks some of the detail of the original.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 24, 1999
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My 19th month old son loves this book; he'll drag it out for us to read to him at least once a day. And at bedtime you can forget about any other books if he spies this one. It has very little text so you can change the story and comments each time which if oyu've ever read a booka hundred times is a nice option. The illustrations are detailed so you can find something new eachtime but not so cluttered that it's confusing. And if you are familiar with Goodnight Gorilla, also by Rathman, there is a scene from that book in the background of one in 10 Minutes... Bottom line, buy ths book if you have a small child. They'll love it!
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By M. Allen Greenbaum HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on May 12, 2005
Format: Board book
Peggy Rathmann is the author and illustrator of "Goodnight Gorilla-her masterpiece-as well as several other highly acclaimed books (e.g., "Officer Buckle and Gloria," "The Day the Babies Crawled Away"). This book combines a number of familiar motifs: Animals that may or may not be imaginary (visible only to the boy protagonist, but not to his father), counting between 1 and 10, lots of detailed background activity, self-referential humor, fantasy spinning off of the mundane, and an exciting conclusion hinging on whether the boy will get to bed on time.

The surface plot is simple: A father immersed in his paper (with humorous stories on it) announces that it's 10 minutes until the boy's bedtime, and counts down the remaining time each minute. Rathmann takes it much further than this though. For some reason, the boy's real hamster advertises a "10-minute bedtime tour" in the local paper. The hamsters arrival coincides with the 10-minutes in which the boy must get ready for bed. For the rest of the story, the pet hamster echoes the father's countdown, and the guest hamsters follow the boy around as he brushes his teeth, goes on the "potty," reads a story, etc. The echoes reverberate like two facing mirrors. Not only do the hamsters recapitulate the father and son's activities, but also the boy becomes his own doppelganger. He's shown reading a book--this book, "10 Minutes Till Bedtime." On page 22 (four minutes to go), you see him looking over his chair at the scores of newly arrived hamsters in his bedroom, holding this book turned to page 22. More and more hamsters arrive, practically filling the bathtub, and they cluster in groups dancing in hulas, laying in deck chairs, water-skiing, and boating.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 9, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I checked this book out of the library for my 2 1/2yr old daughter. Although she enjoys most books we check out, I've never seen her react so favorably to a book and because there are so many things going on, I never tire of reading it with her! We've discovered something new every single time we've read it. We enjoy finding the 10 numbered hamsters of the family and always know #9 is going to be up high, etc! Not to mention how she helps me "read" it, shouting out BEDTIME and counting down w/me! It reminds me of a Richard Scarry book my brother had growing up that he would never put down and I knew I had to make this a permanent addition to our family!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 27, 2001
Format: Board book
This book is adorable! I bought it for my 5 month old son. I love these kinds of books that have detailed illustrations that enable you to introduce young children to the joy of reading through the pictures and easy text featured. Peggy Rathmann has sooo much talent in the illustration end. If you're familiar with her other books (Good Night, Gorilla & Officer Buckle and Gloria), you'll get a sneak peak at those characters in here but you've got to look closely. Her books are so fun that even my two-year old daughter enjoys them. She picked this book out to read today several times even though we bought it for her brother for Christmas. Good Night, Gorilla was a favorite of my daughter's, but I think we both love this book even more.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Lockie Hunter on February 12, 2008
Format: Paperback
The brilliance of this book lies in the tiny details and the chaotic, then calm, nature of bedtime.
As the hamsters accompany the child on his bedtime routine, brushing teeth, pajamas, some are imitating our spiky haired hero, watch for one hamster with similar spiky hair parroting the movements of the child, and some are into a little mischief. Each page is packed with activity, and a parent can ask the open ended question, "what do you see" to dramatic effect. I read one review of a parent with an 18 month old who did not seem to `get' the book. He noted that all he could do was to point and say, "this one is brushing his teeth" etc. but I argue that the teaching aspect of this work lies not in the parent's view, but in the child's. Rather than telling the child what is on the page, ask an open-ended question. "which hamster is your favorite? "what do you see? What is happening on this page?" True, there is some effect of a "Where's Waldo" nature in that the page is absolutely packed with details. But, my 5 year old delights in these details, shouting, "look at this one. No...no...no.. look at this one". Each pose, each activity, adds to the bedlam and the giggle factor at my house. Cries of "don't turn the page yet!" are heard with some regularity as reading uncovers something new. It should be noted that by the book's end, the chaos has diminished so much so that the child of the book, and possibly your own child, are ready for bedtime at last. The mental equivalent of running around the yard prior to a nap to tire the child. 5 stars!
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